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Doosan Is United by Loyalty to One Another

Posted October. 27, 2001 10:00,   


``He is a starter, anyway.``

In September 1996, as rookie Park Myung-Hwan started the winless nine games for two months from July to the beginning of September, people gossiped about Manager Kim In-Shik`s selection of starting pitcher patronizing a certain player. But it is a typical way of management for Manager Kim (54) to give a full credit to a player whom he evaluated to be promising.

Manager Kim had resolutely said, ``I will use Park Myung-Hwan as a starter irrespective of the number of his consecutive losses.`` After nine straight losses, Park repaid Manager Kim`s trust completing a game with the Hyundai on September 8th, 1996. And as he earned 8 wins in 1997, and 14 wins in 1998, he has grown up as a team`s leading pitcher.

In August 1999, catcher Jin Gab-Yong came by Manager Kim`s office pleading to “spare his life.`` Manager Kim recognized Jin`s words better than any one else. This meant a trade request. Since he joined the OB organization (currently Doosan) in 1997, Jin had played as a leading catcher for two years through the thoughtful consideration of coaching staffs. But his record had been unsatisfactory. His poor record had been drawn from the maladjustment in the organization since his professional debut. As the Lotte nominated firstly pitcher Sohn Min-Han, Busan-born Jin Gab Yong reluctantly had to wear an OB uniform. So, he could not adjust to his team from the first year in the professional league. After keeping silent for two hours since Jin asked to spare his life, Manager Kim said that he could never trade his beloved disciple for himself. Next day, Jin requested a trade ardently to the organization head office, and finally moved to the Samsung.

Besides, there are many episodes surrounding Manager Kim. Most episodes are related to his trustful relationships with his players. A man of honor, a man of loyalty, Manager Kim is a natural-born `leader`. Since he has taken good care of the players, it is natural that there are many followers. Once anyone ties to Kim, they respect him as a life-long master. The highly-renowned players such as Kim Ki-Tae, Kim Jung-Soo, and Lee Jung-Hoon had said that it was their wish to play a baseball under Manager Kim. Regarding explosive characteristic of the team, catcher Hong Sung-Heun said that it seemed to have resulted from the fact that the coaching staff, players and the fan have long stood together throughout a long period of time

Kim was a first manager in Ssangbangwool Raiders, and then he has managed the Doosan for the past seven years from 1995. He is a manager who has got along with a team for longest period among the currently active managers. He always has a good grasp of the team to the extent that he recognizes the physical condition of the player only by observing the stride of his player. The players also appreciated what Manager Kim was doing. It is a characteristic of the Doosan`s baseball that the trust pays. Just like a patient bear, the Doosan is a unbending team which never gives up the game.

This is the very power of the Doosan which unexpectedly gained advantages with three wins and one loss against the mighty Samsung, just a win away from the Korean Series title.

Kim Sang-Soo ssoo@donga.com