Returning to Incheon after 13 years, SSG Landers’ new head coach Kim Jae-hyun expressed his intention to reach out to fans with authenticity.헤라카지노
He emphasized that he will not artificially change the generation, which SSG has declared as its biggest challenge.
SSG announced the appointment of former LG Twins power enhancement coordinator Kim Jae-hyun as the new manager of the SSG Landers on March 15.
For Kim, it’s his return to Incheon after 13 years.
Kim began his professional career in 1994 when he joined the LG Twins and became a star player, leading LG’s “New Wind Baseball” program.
After the 2004 season, Kim became a free agent and moved to SSG’s predecessor, the SK Wyverns, where he was a key hitter during the SK dynasty.
Winning the Golden Glove as the designated hitter in 2005, his first year with SK, Kim led the team as captain the following year, and in 2007, he led the team to the Korean Series title and was named the Series Most Valuable Player (MVP). He also helped SK win the Korean Series in 2007, 2008, and 2010.
After retiring after the 2010 season, Kim turned around and returned to Incheon to lead the front office.
“SSG is a team that I have a lot of good memories of,” Kim told Newsis after the club’s announcement. We won three championships, and I have great memories of winning the Korean Series MVP. I still have my favorite juniors.” “I’m looking forward to it. On the other hand, it’s also a bit of a pressure.”
The pressure is due to SSG’s situation. Kim took on the role at a difficult time.
SSG won a “wire-to-wire” title last year, never losing the top spot from the start to the end of the season. The team went on to win the Korean Series, the first overall title in its history.
This year, they finished the regular season in third place and qualified for fall baseball for the second year in a row.
However, the postseason was turbulent, as the team’s rapid transformation backfired.
After the 2022 season, the team fired former coach Kim Won-hyung, who had been re-signed for three years, within a year, and shuffled the existing coaching staff. The process of selecting the next manager was also noisy as candidates were exposed.
In the second round of the draft, the team lost 23-year SSG star Kim Kang-min to the Hanwha Eagles after failing to include him in the 35-man protected list. SSG fans were very disappointed with the move.
Amidst the noise and controversy, SSG held former head coach Kim Sung-yong accountable and changed his position to head of the R&D center. Kim subsequently resigned and left the team.
Kim said, “There were definitely some things that were disappointing, and it’s true that it’s a lot of pressure to be the head coach in this situation,” but he also said, “We need to keep working to change the minds of disappointed fans. If we approach them with sincerity and in a good way, I think the fans who turned away will come back. We acknowledge our mistakes and are aware of them, so we will approach them with sincerity.”
There is a sense of confusion inside the club as well. Kim said, “We have seen things from the outside, but we need to accurately grasp the internal situation. We will endeavor to grasp the work first,” he said, adding, “We will take a look and make a move.”
The biggest challenge for SSG is generational change. Generational change was the SSG’s rationale for firing former director Kim Won-hyung.
“There will always be problems if there is an artificial generation change. We need to let it happen naturally,” he said, adding, “Young players need to grow. Then the veteran players won’t be complacent. When that happens, the team is stronger. We need to find ways to guide the growth of young players,” he said, emphasizing the importance of development.
SSG appreciated Kim’s experience in various positions since his retirement. “During the interview, I was impressed by his sober diagnosis of the team’s situation and his vision of the future direction of the club in preparation for the Cheongna era,” he said.
Since retiring as a player, Kim has served as the hitting coach for the LA Dodgers’ Single-A team, the Yomiuri Giants’ second team, and the Hanwha Eagles, as well as the national team hitting coach. He has also worked as a commentator, a Korean Baseball Organization (KBO) technical committee member, and a power-enhancement coordinator for LG.
“I think my experience will be very helpful,” said Kim. I studied a lot about development while working as a power enhancement coordinator at LG,” said Kim. “I will think about how to incorporate it at SSG. I will work hard to develop young players so that the team can become stronger.”