Former Hanwha Eagles manager Carlos Subero said Saturday "good times" are around the corner for the downtrodden South Korean baseball club, calling on fans to keep cheering on the team as he left the country following a recent dismissal.
Subero was fired by the Eagles on Thursday, moments after a 4-0 win over the Samsung Lions. This was the final year of a three-year contract for the Venezuelan skipper.
The Eagles finished in last place among 10 Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) clubs in each of Subero's first two seasons here, 2021 and 2022. Subero had some leeway, though, as the Eagles were rebuilding with young and unproven players getting regular playing time.
During the last offseason, the Eagles shifted gear into a "win now" mode, opening up their wallet to sign veteran free agents. Subero still couldn't guide the team into contention in the early going, and despite winning five of his final six games in charge, the Eagles remained in ninth place at the time of Subero's firing.
Subero was replaced by the Eagles' minor league manager, Choi Won-ho.
Before departing from Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, Subero said he enjoyed a "very special" experience with the Eagles players over the past two-plus seasons.
"The Hanwha Eagles and their hard-working players are starting to develop. There's more to come," Subero said. "They still have more growth underneath them. You've got to do things with more conviction."
Subero thanked the famously loyal Eagles fans for their unwavering support, despite so much losing in recent years. The Eagles haven't been to the postseason since 2018, and that was their first trip to the playoffs in 11 years.
"You can see that the fans are very special. We lose games and fans still come out," Subero said. "They've been through some tough times but good times are about to come. So keep cheering on and keep supporting the team."
Source: Yonhap News Agency