Royal Return: Sung Woo Lee back in KC for the World Series

October 20, 2014
Sung Woo Lee, center, speaks to the local media after arriving at Kansas City International Airport Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. Lee is a Kanas City Royals fan from South Korea and came to Kansas City to see his first Royals game. He will see five games and throw out the first pitch on Monday (AP Photo/The Kansas City Star, Brian Davidson)

Sung Woo Lee, center, speaks to the local media after arriving at Kansas City International Airport Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. Lee is a Kanas City Royals fan from South Korea and came to Kansas City to see his first Royals game. (AP Photo/The Kansas City Star, Brian Davidson)

(Yonhap) — South Korean superfan Sung Woo Lee is returning to Missouri to cheer on his favorite baseball club in the World Series in person.

Lee will arrive in Kansas City Tuesday.

The upstart Royals, currently riding an eight-game postseason winning streak, will take on the San Francisco Giants in the World Series. The opening game is set for Tuesday evening, local time, at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.

“I am really happy,” Lee said. “I am trying to keep my cool before the game, because I don’t want to jinx anything.”

Lee, 38, shot to fame in August when his devotion to the Royals earned him a trip to Kansas City. Lee has been a fan of the Royals since 1995, rising up early to watch live games on American Forces Network and going through some lean years even as the Royals remained the American League doormat.

Lee’s fandom became a social media sensation and in the crucial summer stretch, when the Royals were battling for a playoff spot, his dedication inspired the Twitter campaign, #SungWooToKC.

The Royals invited him to the United States for 10 days, during which he threw out the ceremonial first pitch at Kauffman Stadium and mingled with some of the Royals’ legends, including Hall of Famer George Brett, currently the team’s vice president of baseball operations.

To boot, the Royals went 9-1 during Lee’s stay, cementing his status as their good luck charm. Also, the Royals swept the Giants at home while Lee was there.

And when the Royals made their first World Series since 1985, another social media campaign got into full swing: #BringBackSungWoo.

Josh Swade, a Kansas City filmmaker, traveled to South Korea to make a documentary on Lee, and will follow the fan’s trip to the World Series as well. Last week, Swade tweeted a picture he took with Lee with the words, “Guess who’s coming to Game 1?! #SungWooSeries.” Swade had earlier said he was trying to convince Lee’s superiors at work to give him the time off for the trip.

Lee said he is going to try to enjoy his trip while it lasts.

“Except for the fact that I cheer for Kansas City, I am just your average office worker,” he said. “I’d like to see the World Series champion but I don’t know how long I will stay there. I am just going to cheer hard with other fans.”

Lee said now that he’s going to Kansas City for the second time, the place “feels like my second home.”

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