Former KBO rookie of the year charged with drunk driving

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Former KBO rookie of the year charged with drunk driving

Doosan Bears pitcher Lee Yong-chan, last year’s top rookie in the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO), was booked Monday on drunken driving and hit-and-run charges, Seoul police said.

According to the Gangnam Police Department in southern Seoul, Lee had a blood-alcohol level of 0.066 percent when his sport utility vehicle bumped into a sedan from behind in downtown Seoul around 2:50 a.m. on Monday.

The police said Lee, 21, continued to drive for another 400 meters (1,312 feet) before he stopped.

He was later detained by police.

Lee admitted to having had one bottle of soju and three bottles of beer with a friend, the police said.

A blood-alcohol level between 0.05 to 0.1 percent results in suspension of the license and drivers with a blood-alcohol level of more than 0.1 percent lose their license.

Lee, a right-handed pitcher, was voted the KBO’s rookie of the year in 2009 after notching 26 saves in 51 appearances. This year, Lee is leading the league with 25 saves in 47 games and picked up a victory against the Kia Tigers on Sunday.

The hard-throwing Lee was poised to make the Korean national team for the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China, in November.

He is also the second Doosan player to be charged with drunk driving in less than a year.

Last December, pitcher Kim Myung-je fell six meters off a bridge in southeastern Seoul while driving with a 0.172 percent blood-alcohol level, suffering life-threatening injuries to his spine.

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