“I thought about quitting, but…”

Reporter Hong Kyu-bin = “I had a lot of thoughts about the future, and I always thought that if I wasn’t competitive here, I might have to quit.”

That’s what veteran Kiwoom Heroes infielder Lee Won-seok, 36, said as he reflected on his time with the organization since his transfer from the Samsung Lions two months ago.

Lee Won-seok hasn’t had much luck in his 50 games in a Kiwoom uniform, batting .239 with one home run and 12 RBIs.

But the Kiwoom organization sees things differently.

Taking note of Lee’s off-field behavior, Kiwoom presented him with the club’s first multi-year contract on Aug. 28, saying it “highly values his leadership in setting an example for juniors and guiding younger players.”

It is a “2+1 year” contract that guarantees two years until 2025, with an automatic one-year extension if the option is met. The first year’s salary is 400 million won, followed by 300 million won each year thereafter.

Lee, who was born in October 1986, will be able to take the field at the age of 40 if the team qualifies for the postseason in 2026.

“When I was at Samsung, I talked to my older friends and brothers about when I would retire,” Lee said on Tuesday at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul. “I wanted to play as long as I could until I was competitive, and I’m thankful that the club offered me good terms.”

“I didn’t sleep well because I was so happy,” he said, adding that he only heard the news the day before the signing. “It was the best deal for the amount of money and the length of time. I told my wife to thank you as well,” he recalled.바카라

As a senior member of the team, he vowed to improve not only his role but also his personal skills as soon as possible.

“I feel like I need to show a good performance as soon as possible because I have some time to relax (psychologically),” he said. “The dugout leaders are (Lee) Jung-hoo and (Kim) Hye-sung, so I will try to fill in the gaps behind them and push them in the difficult areas.”

“When I was younger, it was difficult for me to approach the seniors, so I had a feeling that ‘I want to approach them like a friend and older brother when I become a senior,'” he said, adding, “I am grateful to the juniors who approached me first.”

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