What will happen to the future of the KIA Tigers, where the unprecedented suspension of coach Kim Jong-kook, who was investigated by the investigating authorities, took place.
KIA announced a shocking matter on the 28th. It suspended manager Kim Jong-kook from his job. “We confirmed that Kim Jong-kook is under investigation by the investigation authorities on the 25th, and we finally confirmed it at a meeting with him on the 27th,” KIA said. “The team decided that he could not perform his duties normally as a manager while the investigation was underway and suspended him from his job. The final decision of the coach will be made after watching the investigation, and the first-tier spring camp will be conducted under the system of senior coach Jin Gap-yong.”헤라카지노
Ahead of the departure of the team’s spring camp on Thursday, a major unfavorable factor occurred to Kia. Manager Kim Jong-kook has reportedly been questioned by investigating authorities. Specific allegations have not been made public, but the allegations are not related to the recent recruitment scandal that occurred in the independent league.
It is known that Kim was investigated by the investigating authorities as a suspicion of bribery. The KIA club has not revealed what charges Kim was specifically investigated on. This is because it is cautious to mention it prematurely when the investigation is underway, and it may affect the investigation situation.
KIA teams are in a dilemma. Since it is difficult to prematurely decide Kim Jong-guk’s future based on the principle of presumption of innocence, the team decided to wait and see the situation through suspension of his duties. If Kim admitted any wrongdoing, he could voluntarily resign or be sacked, but given the suspension of his duties, Kim does not appear to have admitted any charges.
Kia said it will decide on Kim Jong-guk’s future after monitoring the investigation. If the investigation result proves that he is wrong, Kim will not be able to return to the team, which will lead to his disgraceful resignation. If the investigation result proves that he is not guilty, Kia should make a decision. This year is the last year of his contract, and he could either return to the team to play for a season or consider replacing the head coach.
The question is whether the investigation by the investigating authorities will come to a final conclusion as soon as possible. Police and prosecutors will likely take time to investigate. KIA team avoided the situation by suspending its coach’s duties once it learned that the investigating authorities investigated Kim ahead of the departure of the spring camp. The move is aimed at ensuring that the camp training will not be disrupted as much as possible due to the chaotic atmosphere.
Kia is all the more agonizing because it experienced a crisis involving former team leader Jang Jung-seok last year. In March last year, Jang was dismissed due to controversy over his demand for bribes.
Former general manager Jang Jung-seok was suspected of asking for back money in return for the contract while discussing an extension contract with Park Dong-won, who is about to acquire FA qualifications during the 2022 season. Park Dong-won, who signed a FA contract with LG, reported the recording file to KIA and also reported it to the Professional Baseball Players Association.
Former general manager Jang explained that it was a joke, but it was difficult to see it as a joke in the recorded file submitted by Park Dong-won to the players’ association. KIA, which identified Jang’s alleged demand for money and valuables, reported to the KBO Clean Baseball Center and held its own disciplinary committee to vote on the dismissal of Jang, who caused a stir for damaging his dignity.
At the time, Kia dismissed Jang Jung-seok for his alleged role in damaging his reputation. A disciplinary committee was held against Jang and decided to dismiss him. After receiving a tip last week that he demanded bribes from a player, it investigated the facts. Regardless of the facts, however, it decided that it was unacceptable for him to take ill-advised behavior of demanding bribes from a player in the course of negotiations with his team, and ultimately dismissed him. The team announced that it will continue to strive to educate all team members and executives on compliance to ensure that such a case does not happen again.
For the second consecutive year, the team
s general manager and manager were involved in unsavory suspicions. If the prosecution investigation is prolonged and Kims suspension continues to lead to spring camps and demonstrators, Kia may make a decision ahead of the opening of this season.
After graduating from Mudeung Middle School, Gwangju Jeil High School, and Korea University, Kim joined the club with Haetae’s first nomination in 1996, and he was a one-club man who only played for the Tigers. Until his retirement in the 2009 season, he had a batting average of 247 with 66 homers, 429 RBIs and 604 stolen bases in 1,359 games in the first division. Notably, he boasted outstanding infield defense and played for the national team several times, as a franchise star.
After retirement, he started as a defensive coach for the minor league in 2011 and served as the chief coach for the main league in 2021. He took the helm of Kia in 2022. This year is his last year under a three-year contract. In his first year as a coach in 2022, he advanced to the wild card game as fifth place and was eliminated after losing to KT.
In 2023, Kia failed to enter the fall season by ranking sixth. Throughout the season, its main players, including Na Sung-bum, Kim Do-young, Choi Hyung-woo, Choi Won-joon, and Park Chan-ho, were injured, and both of its foreign pitchers were replaced in the middle of the season due to sluggish performances. Last year, Kia recorded 73 wins, two draws and 69 losses, falling one game behind fifth-ranked Doosan (74 wins, two draws and 68 losses), and failed to advance to the post season.
KIA hopes to win the title this season not only in fall baseball but also in its bid to become the champion. During off-season, Kia renewed its contracts with key players and carefully selected foreign players as well.
LG manager Yeom Kyung-yeop, who won the Korean Series last year, chose KT and KIA as the most promising teams in this season. “KT is the most stable given its overall performance. Next, KIA also has a very good performance. When the two teams start the season, they are the most stable in terms of players’ composition,” Yeom said.
KIA signed a two-year contract with veteran pinch-hitter Ko Jong-wook, who acquired a free agent status. Despite the lengthy negotiation process, Kia signed a three-year contract with Kim Sun-bin, who became its second free agent. Choi Hyung-woo, who played as a center hitter, signed a multi-year non-FA contract with a total of 2.2 billion won for one plus one year.