“Daeho, I’ll see you often”…’868 home runs’ living legend ‘smiles’ at SoftBank chairman

SoftBank Hawks Chairman Masaharu Oh welcomed Dae-ho Lee to Fukuoka for the first time in eight years with open arms.

Lee will take the ceremonial pitch before the SoftBank Hawks take on the Chiba Lotte Marines in Nippon Professional Baseball at the Fukuoka PayPay Dome in Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan, on 28 April. The ceremonial pitch is usually delivered by the ball boy, not the catcher. However, Lee Dae-ho’s ceremonial pitch will be delivered by SoftBank’s “signature” Akira Nakamura.

SoftBank invited Lee to celebrate the 85th anniversary of its founding and the 30th anniversary of the PayPay Dome, and he travelled to Fukuoka on the 26th to watch the game between SoftBank and Chiba Rodeo on the 27th. Prior to the game, Lee met with former managers Yuki Yanagita, Yuito Mori, Nakamura, and Koji Akiyama, as well as “batting master” Yuki Yanagita. Inspired by Lee, Yanagita went 3-for-6 with a home run, one RBI and two runs scored, and was the hero of the 6-5 victory in the 12th inning of extra innings.

28th, Fukuoka PayPay Dome. There was a special guest at the ceremonial pitch. SoftBank Hawks Chairman Sadaharu Oh. Although he usually visits the PayPay Dome to coach SoftBank players on their hitting, he met with Dae-ho Lee upon arrival at the stadium.메이저놀이터

Sadaharu Oh made his debut with the Yomiuri Giants in 1959 and was a “one-club man” for 22 seasons until 1980. His career statistics in Nippon Professional Baseball include 2786 hits, 868 home runs, 2170 RBIs, 1967 runs scored, a batting average of 0.301 with an OPS of 1.080 in 2831 games, ranking him as the batting champion five times, the home run champion 15 times, the RBI champion 13 times, and the most hits three times.

His cumulative stats of 1,967 runs, 868 home runs, 5,892 runs batted in, 2,170 RBI, 2,390 walks, 427 doubles, 0.446 slugging percentage, 0.634 on-base percentage, and 1.080 OPS are the best in Nippon Professional Baseball. His 868 home runs are the most in the world, even including the Major League Baseball and the KBO.

Dae-ho Lee played in Nippon Professional Baseball prior to the 2012 season. After two seasons with the Orix Buffaloes, Lee moved to SoftBank in 2014, hitting .300 with 19 home runs, 68 RBIs, 60 runs scored and a .816 OPS in 170 games. The following year, in 141 games, he hit .282 with 31 homers, 98 RBIs, 68 runs scored and a .892 OPS in 144 games.

The 2015 season, in particular, was the “star” of the Japan Series. Lee batted fourth in the Japan Series against the Yakult Swallows and had a “one-man show” with 16 hits, eight doubles and two home runs in five games, becoming the first Korean player to win the Japan Series MVP title. His eight RBIs in the series, which ended in Game 5, tied the record for most RBIs in a single game.

After meeting Lee, Chairman Sadaharu Oh exchanged brief greetings. Dae-ho Lee shared his latest news, such as his recent broadcast appearances, and Sadaharu Oh said, “I’ve been listening to him often through contact with coach Kim Sung-geun,” adding, “You’re doing a great job. Keep up the good work and I’ll see you often.” After the meeting with Lee Dae-ho, Sadaharu Oh worked hard on the batting instruction of SoftBank players.

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