The newly launched ‘Kim Tae-hyung-ho’ is moving. The pieces are starting to come together. The son of the man who led the Lotte Giants to their first championship is also joining the team to rebuild.
The Lotte Giants announced on Tuesday that they have hired Kim Tae-hyung as their 21st manager. The contract is worth a total of 2.4 billion won ($600 million in signing bonus and $600 million in annual salary) for three years.
Lotte has failed to advance to fall baseball for the past six years. This season, they reached the top of the standings early in the season, but their performance dropped after the middle of the season. Manager Larry Sutton stepped down in the middle of the season, and the team finished the season with Lee Jong-woon as acting manager. There were even rumors of coaching discord in the middle of the season. The team ended the season in seventh place and was labeled “Bomde”.
There were calls for a major change. The team hired Kim, a “championship hired gun.
Kim took the helm of Doosan in 2015 and immediately won the Korean Series in his first year. He went on to win three Korean Series titles (2015, 2016, 2019) and two overall titles (2016, 2019). Kim’s accomplishments made him a favorite to turn Lotte around.
New wine in new bottles.
The club began moving quickly to organize a new coaching staff. Kim Joo-chan, Ko Young-min, and Yoo Jae-shin, who all worked together at Doosan, will join the team for now.
The son of the late Yoo Du-yeol, Lotte’s first Korean Series MVP in 1984, Yoo joined the Hyundai Unicorns in 2006 and played for the Heroes and then KIA. After retiring, he began his coaching career with Doosan’s second team, and this year he served as the operations and baserunning coach for the second team.안전놀이터
The late coach hit a come-from-behind three-run home run off Samsung starter Kim Il-yung in Game 7 of the 1984 Korean Series against the Samsung Lions with the score tied at 3-4. Lotte went on to win their first Korean Series title, and Yoo was named the Korean Series MVP.
Drafted by the Samsung Lions with the fifth overall pick in the second round of the 2000 Korean Baseball Entry Draft, Coach Kim was known as the “Lotte Man” during his playing days. He moved to Lotte in 2001 and played until 2012. He then moved to KIA and retired in 2020. He started coaching at Doosan in 2021, and this year he was an assistant hitting coach for the first team. Kim will return to coach next season and will be wearing a Giants uniform for the first time in 12 years.
Coach Ko Young-min is a “Doosan man. He joined the organization in 2002 and played exclusively for Doosan until 2016. During his time playing Doosan’s brand of baseball, he stole more than 30 bases, introducing the term “double-player” (second base + right field) to the baseball world with his outstanding base running and wide defensive range.
In addition to these players, Lotte is expected to make additional coaching hires. The club has decided not to renew the contracts of eight coaches – Park Heung-sik, Jeon Jun-ho, Choi Kyung-chul, Jang Tae-soo, Jeong Ho-jin, Kim Dong-han and Ryan Long – for next season.
Kim will be inaugurated on April 24, and will meet with the team at the final training session on April 25 at Sangdong Stadium.