Mr. May’s smashing monthLee Seoung-yeop of Chiba Lotte Marines ―known as “Mr. May” ― is looking to stretch his home run streak through this month.
From 1995 to 2003, Lee hit a total of 75 home runs in those eight “May” months, earning his his nickname. Now, he is enjoying his second season in the Japanese leagues.
Starting with the game against the Hiroshima Carp, he hit home runs in five consecutive games. Lee hit a total of eight home runs last month, a feat that has put him in fourth place in the Pacific League home run standings.
The slugger has not slowing down this month. On Wednesday, he hit a solo home run in the second inning against Hiroshima to continue his streak. June has been good for Lee as well. Totaling his nine seasons in Korea, he hit 72 cumulative home runs for the month.
Lee is a slow starter but usually gets on a roll a month into the season. Since his debut as a professional baseball player in 1995, Lee has jumped on the home run race starting late April to early May and rides it through September. Lee playing style in Japan is the same as it was when he was in Korea.
Ranked No.1 designated hitter in All Star voting, Lee’s home run streak is bringing in All Star votes. As of Wednesday Lee is leading the designated hitter position with 43,460 votes, well ahead of second- place Julio Zuleta of the Softbank Hawks with 29,220 votes. Voting runs until the June 26 and the All Star game is scheduled for July 22 and 23.
by Chang Hye-soo