147km/h infielder’ Lee Gyu-min of Yongin College of Arts and Sciences “I really want to become a pro.”
‘Baseball Korea’ would like to introduce dark horses in college baseball that are relatively under the spotlight ahead of the draft.메이저놀이터
The third player to be introduced is Lee Gyu-min (22), a third baseman at Yongin University of Arts and Science.
‘Strong dog’ Lee Gyu-min leads Bae Myung-go to victory
Gyu-min Lee, third baseman at Yongin University of Arts and Science. Photo = Provided by the player himself
‘Strong shoulders’ are a very important factor for an infielder. This is especially essential for shortstops and third basemen who must throw long distances to first base. Even though they have smooth handling and natural steps, there are many cases where they give up their infield position due to poor throwing. From this perspective, Gyu-min Lee is the player best suited to the position of infielder. Although he is not very tall, his shoulders are as good as those of a professional pitcher, which makes him shine.
Even in the baseball world, there is a fielder who can easily stamp the number ‘140’ with a speed gun. However, there are not many infielders who can throw a ball in the mid to high 140 km/h range from the mound like Lee Gyu-min. “When I was in high school, there were a lot of pitchers on the team, so I barely got to play in official games. “He has been on the mound since he entered college, and his highest velocity reached 146 to 7 km/h.” He showed confidence when asked about restraint.
Gyu-min Lee has stood out with his strong arms since his days at Baemyung High School. Even at the time, he was considered ‘No. 1’, beating out many prominent competitors by one shoulder. Even at Baemyung High School, where competition for the starting spot was fierce, he took charge of Baemyung High’s hot corner with his powerful throws. His hitting wasn’t bad either. In 2019, his third season in high school, he contributed to the team’s batting lineup with a batting average of .333. In the final of the Association Janggi Championship held that year against Jeonju High School, in the bottom of the 7th inning when the score was tied 1-1, he hit the final triple and won the Distinguished Service Award. He was an indispensable player for the team.
“I won championships in elementary and middle school, but winning in high school was even more special. We fought really fiercely. “It was the result of competing with strong players across the country in limited opportunities.” For Lee Gyu-min, winning was a struggle itself.
However, the results were not good. Because he continued to throw strong throws, his right elbow ended up getting damaged. Ultimately, his major league dreams were dashed when he had to undergo MCL surgery. Although he was very disappointed, Gyu-min Lee did not give up. It was because of the gift of confidence he gained while advancing into the United States. He said, “In the process of entering the United States, he developed feelings that he had never felt while playing baseball. “I have confidence that I can do it too.” These are the words of Lee Gyu-min.
Gyu-min Lee has grown to the next level since entering the ‘new’ Yongin College of Arts and Sciences. From his first year in school, he served as pitcher and had a batting average (.387) approaching .400. His stable defense also received plus points. Although it is overshadowed by his strong shoulders, Lee Gyu-min has another weapon. This is a grit that is hard to find in student athletes these days. His grit and unique competitive spirit, which is reminiscent of ‘Agbari’ Son Ah-seop, are evaluated as being on par with professional players. He also played a role in mental management. Gyu-min Lee said, “In the past, I was the type of person who often got excited while playing games. “Compared to his high school days, he seems to have changed the most in that area,” he reflected. However, his second challenge was also ‘unknown’.
Gyu-min Lee decided to defer graduation ahead of the 2023 season. This is the path he chose to get one more chance to participate in the draft. A local A club scout predicted, “This is a case that has received relatively little attention because his physical condition is not exceptional,” and added, “For a club that values tools, it will quickly emerge as an attractive card.”
I carefully asked Gyu-min Lee about his feelings ahead of the third draft. “I would like to say that he is a player who can show his skills rather than just his records. “My final goal for this year is to somehow go pro.” There was earnestness in his voice as he concluded the interview.
Baseball Korea is a baseball magazine that provides KBO League prospects, scouts, and rookie draft news based on student baseball such as Korean youth baseball and high school baseball. Pursuing the Korean version of ‘Baseball America’, it was launched in March 2019 and has been telling rich baseball stories through offline monthly magazines, YouTube broadcasts, and online media. Baseball Korea’s goal is to highlight the efforts of amateur baseball players and field baseball players who work hard toward their dreams and provide healthy motivation. In 2023, we plan to tell the stories of many amateur athletes through ‘MK Sports’.