Mariners agree with Dae-Ho Lee, MVP of 2015 Japan Series
The Seattle Mariners are looking for more offense and have agreed with Korean slugger Dae-Ho Lee on a minor-league deal worth $4 million, it was first reported by Bob Dutton of the News Tribune on Wednesday.
Lee, 33, will be invited to spring training by the Mariners, who officially announced the move later Wednesday.
Playing for the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks last season, Lee hit .282 with 31 homers in 141 games. He earned MVP honors for his performance in the Japan Series (in which the Hawks defeated the Tokyo Yakult Swallows).
Dutton quotes Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto as being particularly impressed with Lee’s performance in Japan and Korea:
Lee joins a crowded battle for first base in Seattle, with Adam Lind, Jesus Montero, Stefen Romero and Gaby Sanchez expected to compete for playing time in spring training.
As for Lee’s confidence level, he doesn’t seem to think it will be "impossible" to earn a spot with the Mariners, as quoted by the Tribune:
Lee’s selection as Japan Series MVP, by the way, marked the first time a Korean-born player was given the honor.