Jung-il Ryu (류중일)
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 6", Weight 163 lb.
Jung-il Ryu was a shortstop who played 13 seasons for the Samsung Lions and later coached for and managed them.
Ryu played for South Korea in the 1983 Intercontinental Cup, 1984 Olympics, 1985 Intercontinental Cup and 1986 Amateur World Series. In the latter event, he hit .395 to finish 7th behind four Cubans and Italians Giuseppe Carelli and Roberto Bianchi to help South Korea win Bronze. He hit 8 doubles among his 17 hits and scored 11 runs in the team's 11 games. He also stole 5 bases, one shy of the Series lead. He led the Series in two-baggers.
Ryu hit .287/~.363/.364 as a rookie in 1987 and remained steady at .302/~.362/.362 in limited action in '88. In 1989, he batted .246/~.315/.356. He hit .311/~.396/.428 in 1990, stole 23 bases and scored 70 runs. He batted .285/~.356/.392 with 19 steals in '91 and won a Gold Glove as the best all-around shortstop in the Korea Baseball Organization. In 1992, he slumped to .211/~.301/.310. He bounced back to .281/~.380/.385 in 1993. In 36 games in 1994, he hit .328/~.409/.527, but he fell down to .226/~.277/.310 in '95. In 1996, Ryu hit .245/~.328/.310 in his last season with over 100 games. His playing time fell in 1997 (.242/~.321/.414 in 79 G), 1998 (.200/~.273/.257 in 64 G) and 1999 (.233/~.313/.250 in 56 games) before he retired. His career average was .265/~.345/.367 and he stole 109 bases (in 149 tries) in 1,095 games.
Ryu coached for the South Korean national team in the 2006 World Baseball Classic and 2009 World Baseball Classic. He became manager of the Lions in 2011 and led them to victory in the 2011 Korean Series and 2012 Korean Series. He then managed Korea in the 2013 World Baseball Classic, going 2-1, but the team failed to make the second-round due to the tiebreaker rules. He led Samsung to the 2013 Korean Series to become the second team to win three Korean Series in a row. He managed South Korea to the Gold Medal in the 2014 Asian Games and then led Samsung to a fourth straight title by taking the 2014 Korean Series. Samsung dominated the 2015 KBO but lost the 2015 Korean Series when three key players were caught in a gambling scandal. They plummeted to 9th in the ten-team league in 2016, costing Ryu the reigns. He returned in 2018 as manager of the LG Twins.