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Sun Shi-Heon’s philosophy changes the atmosphere for SSG

“Night training, night training”

The SSG Future Team (2nd team) has been training in Chiayi, Taiwan since February 15th. This is the first camp officially planned and led by SSG Future Team head coach Sohn Shi-heon, who took over in November last year. As the end of the camp approaches (March 10), the players jokingly shout “night training” whenever they see him. It’s a cute way of saying that since they’ve been doing it since day one, they might as well do it once.

Sohn is not unaware of the players’ struggles. “It’s time for the players to get physically tired. Even Park Ji-hwan, who is now playing in the first team camp, can be seen dragging his feet. It wasn’t like that before. I told (first team coach) Lee Sung-yong to take that into consideration and look at Park Ji-hwan.” But the bottom line is that we haven’t canceled any of our night training sessions as we head into the final stretch of camp. We’ve been practicing for an hour to an hour and a half a day. Now the players have given up (?).

Son is a coach who had no connection to SSG until now. He boasts a colorful career that includes a Golden Glove at shortstop and a national team, but he only played for Doosan and NC. After retiring, he coached NC and spent two years training with the Philadelphia Phillies in the American Major League Baseball. He was then called up by SSG last November to join the team. Since his arrival, there have been many ways to become popular with the players. One of them was to grant the players’ request and sneak in a night training session. But Son never did that.

“I’m not interested in being popular with the players,” he says, emphasizing that there are many different types of coaches, but ultimately, the players will follow a coach who is good.” He doesn’t beg for popularity. Instead, you follow your own principles and those of your team, and you take responsibility for them. That’s his philosophy of coaching. That’s how his players get stronger, and that’s how he gets rewarded.

The biggest change for the SSG Future team since Son took over is the amount of training. Even before coming to camp, the players were talking about how “too hard” it was. Head coach Kim Jae-hyun also emphasized that the Future Team players need to increase their training volume, which Son also believes. For example, the Ganghwa SSG Futures Field has eight batting cages for batting practice. There was never more than one player standing in the batting cage. Naturally, the amount of training per individual increases. “It’s an increase compared to last year, but I don’t think it’s a lot of training compared to before,” explains Son, who is running the camp on a four-day training schedule with one day off.

“When I was a kid, I dreamed of being a ‘lazy genius,'” Son said. But that’s not the reality,” he said, emphasizing that second-team players will never be able to beat first-team players if they train the same amount as first-team players. In other words, it takes more effort than the first-team players to turn the tables. Son himself is a former rookie (and current development player), so he knows the process all too well. He believes that even if it’s hard right now, sweat will not betray you.

In fact, in last year’s second team camp, training sessions were often over by lunchtime under the name of ‘self-directed training’. However, this year’s second-team camp will continue with night training after morning and afternoon training. While self-directed training is ultimately a good thing, the younger players don’t have the luxury of being able to see everything around them. Instead, Son and his 토토사이트 coaching staff have a lot of responsibility. They need to find a way to develop these players efficiently. I feel like I’m in charge of the future of these young players.

That’s why he has frequent meetings with the coaching staff and the front desk. This is to clearly understand the players’ strengths and weaknesses, find the most efficient direction for them, and create training methods to suit them. In addition to formal meetings in the morning and afternoon, we also talk over coffee, and there”s nothing formal about it.

He doesn”t impose his authority. He mixes with the players in training. During one of the night workouts on the sixth day, Son became a pitcher himself and threw the ball as if it were a real game. And he did it with full force. It’s a typical Major League style. He learned it while training in the U.S., and he’s been bold in adapting it to Korean conditions.

The players are rewarded for sticking to that discipline and direction. When the first team set up a second camp in Chiayi, Taiwan, Son met with Lee and handed him a letter of recommendation. The letter clearly outlined why he was recommending the player, what progress he had made, and how he would benefit the first team in the eyes of the Future Team coaching staff. The coach was willing to trust Son’s eyes, and as a result, players like Park Ji-hwan, Jeong Jun-jae, and Lee Ki-soon have been making their mark, and the first-team coaching staff is happy with them, as they are slowly working their way into the 2024 first-team squad. The effects of this change in atmosphere will not be immediately apparent, and there will be some pain before it settles in, but the fruits of the system will be sweet when it does.

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