Lotte’s “Special Rookie” Jeon Mir-ri, “Lee Do-ryu” Great Challenge

Will there be another star in the KBO league? Lotte Giants rookie Jeon Mir-yi is sweating hard to achieve that path.

Jeon Mir was selected by Lotte as the third overall pick in the first round of the 2024 KBO rookie draft and will take the professional stage.

Jeon Mir, a native of Gyeongbuk High School, played in 27 games as a batter last year, recording 28 hits, three homers, 32 RBIs, 22 runs, and a batting average of 0.346 OPS 1.032. The pitcher’s record was marked with 42, 42, strikeouts, 11 runs (10 earned runs) and an earned run average of 1.32 WHIP (per-inning on-base allowed rate).

Notably, he led Kyungpook High School to win the title at the Blue Dragon Open National High School Championship in July last year, posting an ERA of 0 WHIP 0.42, four hits in five games, four RBIs and three runs batted in 0.267 OPS and 0.767. He also won the MVP award.

“The only thing that remains to be seen is whether Jeon Mir can join the team as pitcher and batter,” said Sung Min-gyu, who was Lotte’s general manager at the time of his nomination. “He is definitely a capable player.”

Jeon Mir participated in the 2024 KBO Rookie Orientation held at the Daejeon Convention Center on the 9th. He met with reporters at the time and said, “I started technical training. I do physical training in the morning and when the day gets better in the afternoon, I do technical training and throw balls,” adding, “I do both hitting and pitching training. I continue to train in ways that help me. Now, the proportion of pitching training is high.”

Jeon joined the KBO education league in October 2023 and played his first game as a member of the Lotte Giants. At that time, he played as a pitcher and batter. “There was no big difference (for the draw) because it was something I had been doing. But I definitely felt that amateurs and professionals are different,” he said. “People around me are rooting for him (for the draw) like ‘Keep going.'”

Jeon, who is about to start his first professional season, is listening to his seniors’ advice. “In the part of a pitcher, (Kim) Jin-wook said, ‘You don’t have to do that because you’re a rookie. Take your time and don’t be in a hurry.’ All the seniors keep talking to me as I pass by. I’m listening to them.”

Another senior player helped Jeon adapt quickly. He is Jin Seung-hyeon, the son of legendary catcher Jin Gap-yong (chief coach of the KIA Tigers). Jin is two years older than Jeon. We both grew up and dreamed of becoming a professional baseball player.

Jeon Mir said, “I’m the only one who can talk to him first and play with him. I think I got used to it quickly because he kept making me comfortable.”

Ahead of his debut season, Jeon Mir quickly expressed his desire to make his debut in the first division. He also knows that he must work hard to achieve that.

Jeon said, “I don’t think about the rookie of the year yet. First of all, I’m working hard to make a debut in the first division soon,” adding, “I want to be a player who can contribute to the team. And since I’m a rookie, I want to show that kind of spirit.” 스포츠중계