The Lotte Giants appointed former Doosan Bears coach Kim Tae-hyung as their new head coach. This is a result that reflects the intentions of the club’s owner, Lotte Group Chairman Shin Dong-bin.
Lotte officially announced on the 20th, “We have appointed coach Kim Tae-hyung as the 21st head coach.” The terms of the contract are 3 years, a total of 2.4 billion won (down payment of 600 million won, annual salary of 600 million won).
Speculation that Lotte would appoint coach Kim Tae-hyung was already raised during the season. Immediately after former Lotte coach Larry Sutton was virtually dismissed at the end of August, rumors of the appointment of coach Kim Tae-hyung arose. However, coach Kim Tae-hyung is different from the color that Lotte has been pursuing so far, drawing attention to whether this will continue until the final appointment. Lotte has recently recruited mostly first-time coaches, including Lee Jong-woon, Cho Won-woo, Heo Moon-hoe, and Sutton. They preferred relatively soft leadership. Coach Kim Tae-hyung, who has the temperament of a competitive fighter, has a style that puts charisma first, unlike his previous coaches.
A Lotte club official said, “The club owner was at the center of the appointment of coach Kim Tae-hyung.” A high-ranking official from the club said, “The club owner wanted someone who could improve performance through strong leadership and hire a person who could identify the strengths and weaknesses of the players.”
Chairman Shin Dong-bin has recently been increasing his contact with the baseball team. He visited Jamsil in Seoul and Sajik Stadium in Busan a total of four times in the past two years. At the end of last year, he attended Lee Dae-ho’s retirement ceremony and presented him with a permanent retirement ring. Last year, he provided smart watches to the first and second team players, and this year, he even gave the first team players and assistants hair styling devices and headsets.
Many fans wanted a ‘changed Lotte’. The last time Lotte won the Korean Series (KS) was in 1992. Among the 10 clubs, this is the team that has not reached the top for the longest time. Advancement to the postseason has also stopped for six years, ending in 2017.
Chairman Shin Dong-bin’s ‘pick’ of coach Kim Tae-hyung is in response to the demands of Lotte fans who wish to win the championship. Lee Kang-hoon, CEO of the Lotte Giants, who was appointed in December of last year, said, “Of course, I think owner (Shin Dong-bin) also knew (that many fans want Kim Tae-hyung to be appointed as coach).” Representative Lee promised, “Many fans are looking forward to it. We must do better. We will prepare well with coach Taehyung Kim starting from this year’s closing camp and show a stronger performance next season.”
From 2015 to 2021, Coach Kim Tae-hyung led the team to advance to the Korean Series for seven consecutive years, the longest in KBO League history. Among them, it reached the top three times in 2015, 2016, and 2019. Coach Kim pledged, “I am well aware of the weight of the position of Lotte coach. I am grateful to the fans and club owner Shin Dong-bin. I will repay the expectations of the fans who have waited for a long time and achieve results.”
Director Kim’s inauguration ceremony will be held at the Sapphire Room of Lotte Hotel Busan on the 24th. The next day, a meeting with the players will be held at Sangdong Stadium in Gimhae. All prospective free agents (free agents) Jun-woo Jeon and Chi-hong Ahn are expected to attend and greet new coach Tae-hyung Kim. As soon as Coach Kim’s move to Lotte was confirmed, he started recruiting coaches. He decided not to renew the contracts of eight coaches, including acting manager Lee Jong-un and Park Heung-sik and Jeon Jun-ho. Some coaches of teams that advanced to the postseason (PS) this year are planning to change their uniforms to Lotte.먹튀검증
Meanwhile, Lotte parted ways with general manager Sung Min-gyu. General Manager Seong achieved success in nurturing and scouting new players, but his contract was terminated as he was unable to lead Lotte to the postseason even once during his tenure. Director Seong, who failed to sign free agent (FA) contracts and recruit trades, caused noise by frequent clashes with the field.