The Lotte Giants finished seventh in the regular season this year. It was the sixth consecutive year they failed to make the postseason. The last time they played fall baseball was in 2017.
Since then, they’ve changed managers several times.
This year will be no different.
But this time, it’s different.
The team has hired former Doosan Bears manager Kim Tae-hyung.
Kim signed a three-year contract with Lotte for a total of 2.4 billion won ($600,000 down payment, $600,000 annual salary) on the 20th.
According to data obtained by Hankyoreh through a request to the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO), Lotte has played fall baseball only 13 times in 42 seasons in the KBO until this year. That’s a 31 percent chance. 호텔카지노
Less than one in three times, the team has failed to reach the postseason. Of course, that’s the lowest of the 10 teams.
Their fellow original pro team, the Samsung Lions, have made the postseason in 29 of their 42 seasons (69.1%).
They even played 12 consecutive fall games (the most) from 1997 to 2008.
Compare that to the Changwon-based NC Dinos, who advanced to the semifinals with a wild-card victory on April 19, and have made the postseason 72.7% of the time (8 out of 11 seasons).
The team’s postseason appearances have been few and far between.
Since winning the Korean Series in 1992, they haven’t lifted a trophy in 31 years.
Lotte’s frustration quickly became the tears of Giants fans.
Manager Kim Tae-hyung, on the other hand, is a mastermind who led the team to the Korean Series in his debut year as manager (2015).
From 2015 to 2021, he led the team to seven consecutive Korean Series appearances (winning in 2015, 2016, and 2019), a first for the KBO.
This was despite the departure of several key players, including Kim Hyun-soo, Yang Yang-ji, and Min Byung-heon. In 2022, his final year at the helm, Doosan finished ninth, but that was due to injuries to foreign pitchers early in the season.
Speaking to Hankyoreh on Tuesday, Kim Tae-hyung said, “Lotte is a team in the process of rebuilding with many young players.
I think the first thing we need to do is go out to the ballpark and get to know the team.”
Regarding Lotte fans’ hopes for fall baseball, he said, “I feel a sense of responsibility. The goal is to win,” he emphasized.
It remains to be seen if the charismatic “competitor” Kim Tae-hyung will be able to wipe away the tears of Busan, who remained on the sidelines of fall baseball this year.