Written by: Jake Tillinghast
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***These scouting reports are built off of the 20-80 grading scale at the MAJOR LEAGUE LEVEL. These grades DO NOT reflect the players ability against their respective leagues players, in this case, the KBO. The grades are built to reflect how this player would perform at the MLB level if he were to step in an MLB lineup today.***
Lee Jung-hoo Open Side and Front Side Mechanics. You can see the explosiveness in his hip rotation and lower half generating a lot GAP PWR, and starting to show more consistent ability to reach the seats.
Below, showing off his PWR to the Pull side with a really nice display of his swing from both back and open side angles. As well as seeing his pretty interesting batting stance/style. With starting so open and moving squared, then to step again long towards the pitcher. A lot of moving parts in the lower half, but his head, and hands stay so still and gets in a great position to hit and attack the ball out in front.
(KBO Camera work is absolutely phenomenal, gotta give them tons of credit for continuous showings of all players mechanics, pitch grips etc. Tons of detail on display from all angles)
Lee Jung-hoo showing his ability to find hard contact even when getting fooled with his + plate coverage
Video below, are back to back plays. 2 balls over his head, hit by Right handed hitters, tailing away. By no means are these easy or routine grabs. He gets fairly good jumps on the balls, but has trouble picking up the balls trajectory and his routes are less then optimal. Covering a lot of unnecessary ground turning his body around. Athletic and instinctive enough to recover to make both plays, but each could have been made slightly easier. This is the only type of defensive play that has given Lee Jung-hoo fits on a regular basis. He shows strong range around the field and a knack for tacking away hits with some slick grabs.
With more experience, and eventually finding a true home in the OF will lead to improvements on this particular play.
Very young player, but comes with a lot of pedigree and experience. Knows what it takes to be great, and has the work ethic and mentality to thrive in any situation.Lee Jung-hoo has an ability to square up balls and show off an uncanny ability, at such a young age, to find the barrel even when he gets fooled or doesn’t put his best swing on the ball. He consistently is able to get his hands in the right place to at least give himself a chance to be successful.
With how he uses his lower half, when he fills out and his body matures, he will turn into an above average PWR hitter to pair with his + HIT tool, and ability to work counts and make hard contact. Will prove to be a tough out and even harder to strike out at the big league level. Profiles anywhere in the OF with his youth ability to cover so much ground and get extraordinary jumps on the ball. Will be a + defender anywhere, long term best profiles in RF with added size to frame, and a slight regression in speed coming due to it.
His father (Lee Jong-beom) was a former KBO MVP and one of the best 5 tool players throughout the history of the KBO, More athletic then his MLB Comp Nick Markakis, and might end up developing more PWR as well in the coming years with that added strength. MLB Teams will be jumping at the bit to get their hands on Lee Jung-hoo. Being able to come to the states at such a young age (Will be just 24 years old when he would show up for Spring training in 2023 for a big league club, assuming he takes his chances being posted with his 1st opportunity.) Have 2 more years of seeing this young man develop into a star in the KBO, but don’t forget about him, he will be a household name in due time.
Career stats via MYKBOSTATS https://mykbostats.com/players/1524-Lee-Jung-hoo-Kiwoom-Heroes