Chae Eun-sung, who watched LG grow “Baseball is not a short-term game…the goal is top 5”

When Hanwha Eagles captain Chae Eun-sung set his goal for the 2024 season at the beginning of the year, it was to reach fall baseball.

That goal hasn’t changed since Ryu Hyun-jin, the “Korean Monster,” joined Hanwha last month.

The idea is to improve one step at a time, not forgetting the reality of finishing last for three consecutive years from 2020 to 2022.

Chae joined the LG Twins in 2009 as a rookie (developmental player) and has been following the ups and downs of the organization since he was promoted to the first team in 2014.

The team finished fourth in the 2019 and 2020 seasons, and third and second in the 2021 and 2022 seasons, but missed the playoffs and Korean Series.

Then last season, after Chae Eun-sung moved to Hanwha, the team finally popped the championship champagne after 29 years.

Chae Eun-sung met with reporters at Incheon International Airport on the fourth day of her return from spring camp and when asked if her goals had increased, she replied, “No. It’s the same,” she said.

“Even at LG, I didn’t think about winning the championship when we were in last place right away,” she said, “I think there will be a stage where we aim for the top five first and then go higher.”

“I don’t think baseball is a short-term sport,” she said, adding, “It’s been a while since our team hasn’t been to the top five, so we’ve been aiming for the top five.”

Of course, Hyun-jin’s presence has been a boon for new captain Chae Eun-sung.

“I think the atmosphere of the team has improved a lot with Hyun-jin’s 토토 arrival. I think the players will have a lot of confidence because one player has so much power,” said Chae.

“I would like to experience Hyun-jin’s pitching because he is someone I look up to, and he was one of the pitchers I was really curious about because he was in the U.S. when I came up to the first team,” he recalled.

This season, the team has welcomed veterans like Kim Kang-min and Lee Jae-won, as well as free agent (FA) Ahn Chi-hong and new foreign hitter Yonatan Peraza.

“There’s a sense of team chemistry because we have a lot of veterans,” said Chae, who was pleased that “there are good hitters in the front and back of the lineup, so I can trust that if I can’t do it, they can do it from behind.”

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