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03/24/2006 4:44 PM ET
Red Sox claim first baseman Hee-Seop Choi off waivers from Los Angeles
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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The Boston Red Sox today claimed first baseman Hee-Seop Choi off waivers from the Los Angeles Dodgers. Executive Vice President/General Manager Theo Epstein made the announcement from the club's Spring Training home in Fort Myers, FL.

A native of Chun Nam, South Korea, Choi has played all or part of four major league seasons with the Cubs (2002-03), Marlins (2004) and Dodgers (2004-05). The first Korean-born position player to appear in a major league game when he made his big league debut with the Cubs September 8, 2002, Choi is a career .240 hitter with 40 home runs, 120 RBI and a .349 on-base percentage in 363 major league games.

The left-handed batter and thrower boasts a career .992 fielding percentage at first base, committing only 18 errors in 2,387 total chances. Choi made just two errors in 762 total chances at first base in 2005 with the Dodgers, tied for the second-best fielding percentage (.997) among all National League first basemen with 750 or more total chances. Sean Casey led with a .998 fielding percentage.

Choi represented South Korea this month in the World Baseball Classic, helping his nation to a spot in the semi-finals in the inaugural tournament.

The 27-year-old Choi last season matched his career high by hitting 15 home runs for the second straight year, batting .253 with 15 doubles and 42 RBI in 133 games for the Dodgers. He became the first major league player of Asian descent to homer three times in a game when he did so June 12 vs. Minnesota. Choi was also one of eight participants in the Century 21 Home Run Derby during All-Star Game festivities in Detroit, as he represented his home country as part of the derby's new international format. He hit five home runs but did not advance to the second round of the event.

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