Korean slugger Lee Dae-ho, 33, of the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks, announced Tuesday his intent to advance to the Major League Baseball.

“To play in the Major Leagues is the dream of any baseball player,” said Lee in a press conference held at Banyan Tree Club and Spa in Seoul. “I am taking the first step toward the Major Leagues upon due consideration from the Softbank Hawks,” said the reigning Japan Series MVP.

Lee who started with the Lotte Giants in 2001 has topped both the Korean and Japanese baseball leagues. He played in Korea through 2011, hitting 225 home runs in 1,150 games. He went to Japan as a free agent in 2012, first playing with the Orix Buffaloes. He was there for two seasons before moving to the Hawks. Lee hit 98 home runs in 570 games in Japan.

Last week, Lee became the first South Korean to win MVP honors in the championship series of the Japanese professional baseball league.