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Orix Buffaloes hold press conference for Dae-Ho Lee

by on Dec.15, 2011 @ 12:44 am, under NPB

The Orix Buffaloes held a press conference for Dae-Ho Lee at Hotto Motto Field Kobe on Wednesday.

Lee still does not have a uniform number.  When reporters asked about his feelings for the number 10, a number he wore in Korea, he replied, "[Keiji] Obiki wears the number.  I do not think it would be good for either one of us if I got the number.  I will take whatever number is available."

The official Buffaloes' website is also carrying the following comments from Lee (taken during his press conference):

What is your impression of Japan?

I have come here a number of times and I only have good memories.  I love Japan so my impressions are good.

What are your thoughts on the Orix Buffaloes?

I was able to speak to former Orix players Seung-Yeop Lee and Chan Ho Park.  They told me the team is like a big family and that everyone will do what they can to help me get through the transition.  I plan to do my best because I cam to this team to win.

You have won a lot of titles in Korea, is there are a particular title you have your eye on here?

Even though Orix just missed out on the Climax Series, I think they are a very strong team.  I want to bat in the middle of the order and help the team score runs.  I would like to focus a little more on driving in those runs.

What do you think of the manager's hope for three figures, at least 100 RBI?

I think if I am in the middle, then 100 RBIs is something I need to achieve.  I would like to do my best so that I can meet those kind of expectations.

What about the home run?

You can mess up your balance if you only go after home runs and I think you also end up striking out a lot more.  When there are runners on base, I want to focus on doing what I can in order to get that runner home.  If there is no one on base, then maybe I can go for the home runs.

What are you thoughts on the new baseball many players had trouble with this season?

I figured I would have to work with a new baseball if I came to Japan.  I am not that worried.  The ball will carry so long as you hit it properly.  I also think I will be fine as long as I get used to it early on.

Are there any pitchers in Japan you are looking forward to facing?

I really wanted a chance to face [Tsuyoshi] Wada and [Yu] Darvish, but I heard they might not be back next season.  Right now I want face all kinds of pitchers after I have a chance to check some video and do some research.

Is there something you would like to say to the fans?

As a professional [player] I think it is important to live up to everyone's expectations.  I also want to do my best to make sure I can meet those expectations.

I learned the Japanese phrase "dozo yoroshiku onegaishimasu."  I will continue to work hard on learning Japanese.  I look forward to your support.

UPDATE @ 3:12pm - Nine TV cameras (including cameras from two TV stations from Korea) and about 80 reporters covered the press conference.  The team also apparently asked Keiji Obiki to give up the number 10 for Lee, but he refused.