Seattle Mariners Favorites: Dae-Ho Lee

Dae-Ho Lee of the Seattle Mariners looks on.

OAKLAND, CA – SEPTEMBER 10: Dae-Ho Lee of the Seattle Mariners looks on from the dugout. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Seattle Mariners Favorites: Dae-Ho Lee

Dae-Ho Lee was one of my favorite Seattle Mariners players in 2016. His time in Seattle was short, but it seemed like he played for the Mariners for five years.

No one explained Lee’s career better than Greg Johns: “[He] made his mark, denting a few baseballs, creating laughs and lifetime friends and leaving lasting memories with those he met in his lone season in the Major League Baseball in 2016.”

Dae-Ho Lee had a pretty good season in 2016 as a 34-year-old. He batted .253, slugged .428, and hit 14 home runs. But, his stats aren’t what made him a fan favorite.

Dae-Ho’s swag, leg kick, and many other things brought joy to Mariners fans.

Unfortunately, after the 2016 season, he returned to his home country and signed a four year deal with the Lotte Giants. That made him the highest-paid playing in the Korean Baseball Organization.

And yes, Lee is still currently playing. He is 38-years-old by the way… During the 2020 KBO, he posted a solid .292 average and hit 20 dingers. Very Dae-Ho like to say the least.

Lee is also the president of the KBO’s player association and remains one of the most influential Korean baseball players in South Korea.

But, he ran into some trouble recently. If I am reading the Korean news article correctly, Dae-Ho Lee raised the association’s boarding expenses, nearly doubling the previous amount.

The KBO players association’s leadership has faced criticism in the past, so apparently, this type of controversy isn’t something new.

The article did say that Dae-Ho Lee did not violate the rules of the association, so it seems like he is just under scrutiny for his decision making.

Now to end on a good note, Dae-Ho Lee played a big part in the 2016 Mariners season. He will be remembered as a Mariners favorite, despite only playing one season.

The impact of Dae-Ho Lee is even bigger in South Korea and he will be considered a trailblazer for future South Korean big leaguers.