Lee Jung-hoo mets
Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets are focused on finally playing a baseball game for the first time in 2023 on Friday. That game is of the intrasquad variety in Port St. Lucie, but hey, baseball is baseball, right?

While everyone at Clover Park has their eyes set on what the Amazins can accomplish over the next few months, general manager Billy Eppler and his front office continue hunting for future opportunities. As most know, the World Baseball Classic is fast approaching. Teams from around the world are preparing for the tournament. This allows MLB organizations an opportunity to get a look at some players who could become available in the near future.

That’s what the Mets are doing. Metsmerized’s Michael Mayer is reporting that New York is in attendance for Team Korea’s training, which is happening in Arizona. Among the dudes on the roster is Lee Jung-hoo. He’s just 24 years old and is fresh off winning KBO MVP honors.

The Scott Boras client will be posted after this season, so he’ll become available to MLB teams. His bat flip/bat spike game is ready for the big leagues, though:

The numbers Mayer featured at the end of his tweet are definitely eye-popping. It’s not like they’re just a fluke for Jung-hoo, either. He’s already racked up six seasons in the KBO, debuting in 2017 as an 18-year-old. More or less, his offensive numbers have looked at least somewhat similar to what he did during his MVP performance.

Jung-hoo has never finished with a batting average below .324 or an OPS worse than .812 as a professional. His career batting line is an outstanding .342/.407/.495, and the past two seasons have been some of the outfielder’s best work.

In 544 plate appearances during the 2021 season, Jung-hoo slashed .360/.438/.522 with seven homers and 84 RBI. Of course, he then set single-season career-high marks in homers (23) and RBI (113) en route to winning MVP honors in 2022.

Last year was just the second time he finished with double-digit homers. However, it was the second time he accomplished the feat in three years. And if we look elsewhere on his Baseball Reference page, there is probably optimism that more power is on the way. Jung-hoo has posted five straight seasons with 30-plus doubles. If we specifically look at the past three years, he’s hit 49, 42, and 36 doubles.

So, it looks like that gap power is there. Since he’s still so young, it could translate to more homers down the road. I know what you’re thinking — his agent is Scott Boras, so things won’t be easy. But aside from the Carlos Correa (and Kumar Rocker) physical debacle, the Mets and Boras have a good relationship these days. After all, they signed Max Scherzer to a lucrative three-year deal. They also came to terms on Brandon Nimmo’s eight-year deal mostly via group text. So, things are likely OK.

It’s interesting to hear this news because outside of a few exceptions (like Shohei Ohtani), I feel like we don’t hear a ton about players who will be posted until right before it happens. Now, we’ll get a chance to see what Jung-hoo does during the WBC. It looks like the Mets will be interested to see how he performs, too.

Matt Musico can be reached at matt.musico@xlmedia.com and you can follow him on Twitter: @mmusico8.

Matt Musico is an editor for ESNY. He’s been writing about baseball and the Mets for the past decade. His work has been featured on numberFire, MetsMerized Online, Bleacher Report, and Yahoo! Sports.