“He’ll be a really good coach.”
Doosan recently submitted a request to the KBO to register pitcher Kim Ji-yong (35-Dusan Bears) as a player-coach. The idea was to have him spend the rest of the season as a “playing coach.
You may recognize the term “playing coach” from soccer or basketball. However, in baseball, “playing coach” is not a common position.
Doosan’s request to register as a player-coach during the season was approved by the KBO as a “coach-player” after a week-long voting period. Doosan was assigned the role of bullpen coach for the Futures.
There have been cases of nominal “playing coaches” in the past, but they were usually registered as players and entrusted with coaching duties, not as “coach/player” with a definite playing coach position. It was even rarer to register mid-season. Jung Min-cheol (Hanwha), Kim Tae-hyung (Doosan), and Ryu Taek-hyun (LG) have all worked as playing coaches. In the case of Lotte’s Jeong Tae-seung, who is said to have recently worked as a “playing coach,” he was registered as a player and then asked to work as a coach.
A KBO official said, “In order to play in a game, a player usually registers as a player, and it’s not easy to find all the cases where the position of playing coach is clear.” “It’s not that there aren’t previous cases, but it’s very rare,” another KBO official explained.
Kim Ji-yong’s baseball career has taken many twists and turns.
After graduating from Chung-Ang University, Kim began his professional career by joining the LG Twins in the ninth round (65th overall) of the 2010 KBO Draft.
A professional uniform was hard earned. This time, he had to battle injuries. After appearing in five games in his rookie year, a series of shoulder injuries kept him out of the lineup, and it wasn’t until 2015 that he saw the field again.
In 2016, he started 51 games and pitched 63 innings, finishing with a record of 3-4 with 17 saves and a 3.57 ERA.
He became a key member of the bullpen, recording eight holds in 2017 and 13 in 2018.
This time, his elbow was the problem. He underwent elbow surgery in late 2018 and took all of 2019 off.
He came back in 2020, but was unable to make the opening roster, and as younger players came up through the ranks, his spot became smaller and smaller. Eventually, he requested a release from the club and left LG, where he had played for more than a decade.
It was Doosan, the “Hanji Bung” family, that reached out to Kim Ji-yong. They were impressed with Kim’s sincerity.
Kim appeared in 18 games in 2022, adding one win to his career record, giving him a 14-14 record and a “5 percent chance of winning.
Despite his unremarkable performance, Kim was re-signed. His spring training wasn’t bad enough to warrant a second contract. At the same time, Doosan thought that he could serve as an example for the younger players through his training, but his pitching did not improve as expected.
The club decided that Kim Ji-yong could be successful as a coach. Coach Kwon Myung-cheol, who worked with Kim in 2011 at LG, said, “He went through everything a player can go through. He had surgeries, setbacks, and peaks. He has enough qualities to be a good coach.” A Doosan official said, “When he first came to Doosan, many people were surprised to see how he trained. He led by example and was always diligent in his workouts. He has a clear routine,” and “he has shown a lot of good things to the juniors.”카지노
Kim Ji-yong said, “I’m having fun. I think I’ve done everything I can as a professional baseball player. I’ve had surgery, I’ve rehabbed. I’ve been to the All-Star Game, and I’ve played in the best-of-three series. I will try to be a coach who communicates with players by talking to them.”