KIA coach Kim Jong-guk is a rare ‘one-club man’ who has devoted all of his career as a player and coach to KIA. He is also a figure who is guiding the recent 20-year history of the Bonnie Tigers.
Coach Kim picks winning the 2009 Korean Series as one of the three most memorable memories of his active career. It is completely different from when he won as a rookie, and the afterglow lingered longer because it was a victory experienced as one of the oldest in the team. And one of the players who formed the infield with coach Kim at the time was Ahn Chi-hong (33, Lotte), who was a rookie at the time and now has grown into an infielder representing the league. 스포츠토토
An Chi-hong, who has been selected as one of the infielders representing the amateur stage since high school, joined the KIA in 2009 after being nominated as the overall 1st choice in the 2nd round of the 2nd round. And in 2009, his rookie season, he participated in 123 first-team games and even won the Korean Series. He also hit 14 home runs, arousing great anticipation from fans. It is evaluated that the experience of winning the Korean Series by obtaining stable participation opportunities from his first season was a great help to An Chi-hong’s growth afterwards. Since then, An Chi-hong has grown into the league’s top second baseman.
Coach Kim saw An Chi-hong as a teammate since his rookie days, and coached An Chi-hong even after becoming a coach. He deserves to be said to be one of the most well-remembered figures from the early years of An Chi Hong’s career. Manager Kim is still focusing on a player with potential comparable to An Chi-Hong’s childhood. It is Kim Do-young (20), the first nomination last year. The two players have slightly different results, but they have one thing in common: they are the highest ranked infielders recently nominated by the KIA.
Coach Kim recalled that time, “At that time, An Chi-hong had good qualities in both ball, defense, and state. And he entered the season and played while securing his place,” emphasizing that Kim Do-young was also not a falling talent. Although the speed at which Kim Do-young develops in the future is the key, he expected that he would be able to follow An Chi-hong’s path, confident that he would not lag behind in terms of potential alone. It is trustworthy because it is the evaluation of coach Kim, who watched both players from the side.
Director Kim said, “At that time, Chi Hong was better. But I think Do Young is better on the defensive side. Especially, he has the ability to see the shortstop.” I’m watching. Runners and main power are better than An Chi-hong. For a player who just graduated from high school or a player who just turned pro, there is no other player who has such an overall balance in terms of speed and power.”
Kim Do-young, who made a big success in the demonstration game last year and raised great expectations, fell into a vicious circle at the beginning of the season, falling into extreme sluggishness. However, instead of lowering Kim Do-young to the second team, coach Kim let him continue to play in the first team and made him familiar with his big stage. The first team coaching staff also paid special attention to Kim Do-young and corrected his batting form, and as a result, Kim Do-young produced detailed indicators such as better performance and better batting speed in the second half, proving that KIA’s eyes were not wrong.
Now, what Kim Do-young needs may be an ‘opportunity’ like An Chi-hong. It is not the time to give a definitive answer to the starter, but it seems clear that Kim Do-young will be used more than last year. If he shows his batting talent, he deserves a challenge as the starting third baseman, and he can also play as a shortstop to cover Chan-Ho Park’s break.
Now, Kim Do-young must take his place so that the KIA infield can distribute his stamina. He is still a player who sees the future, but it means that he is a very important player in the present right now. The player’s efforts must continue, but how KIA manages this talent and establishes a strategy has also become a very important year.