JP's KBO May 27 - 28 Writeup
MLB
JP's KBO May 27 - 28 Writeup

JP
05-27-2020

May 27th – 28th

KBO NOTES – DAY 11

OVERALL RECORD: +61U (51-38-3)

Record on 3U Plays: 12-1-1 (+31U)

Record on 2.5U Plays: 2-4 (-5U)

Record on 2U Plays: 31-12-2 (+36U)

Record on 1U Plays: 21-18-1 (-.5U)

Record on .5U Plays (nearly all +200 or greater): 4-9 (-.5U)

 

G1: NC Dinos (-210) vs Kiwoom Heroes (+155) O/U 11

Dinos:

SP: Young-gyu Kim (3/10)

            2019 ERA: 5.29

            2020 Stats: 3.94 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 16 IP, 18 H, 6 HR (starts vs LG/SK/Hanwha)

Right off the bat, it’s pretty clear that Kim’s 3.94 ERA is incredibly misleading. For one, he’s given up an astonishing 6 HR in 16 IP, which is really, really bad in a KBO dependent more on contact than power, as compared to the MLB. For another, he has a heinous 7.17 FIP, which, coupled with the fact that 2 of his 3 starts have been against terrible teams, suggests that Kim is due for extreme regression. As with many pitchers who are on elite-hitting teams, the question is whether that regression will come sooner rather than later. Eventually, he’ll have to face another team that can really hit, but Kiwoom isn’t quite at that level. They’re a true middle of the road team, profiling near the bottom in batting average, near the top in runs, and right in the middle in OPS. They’ve really struggled against decent pitching over the last four days – scoring 0, 2, and 3 – but this should be a matchup where they have a chance to break out a little bit. At worst, it’s hard to immediately write them off at +155, but let’s check out their starting pitching before making any decisions.

HITTING: 3rd in average and runs

Heroes:

SP: Dae-hyun Jung

            2019 ERA: N/A, hasn’t pitched in KBO since 2017

            2020 Stats: N/A

Well, now this makes more sense why the Dinos are -210. Jung literally hasn’t thrown a pitch in the KBO in three years, and when he last was there, he was absolutely horrendous, starting 10 games and appearing in 17 total to the tune of a 7.06 ERA, with a 7.29 ERA the year before. Jung is, simply put, not a good pitcher, and the Dinos should be able to absolutely torch him quickly. With hardly any data on Jung, it’s hard to write much of anything about him other than that the Dinos should be in great shape to score some early runs. That being said, I don’t want to go too heavily on the Dinos for anything past -1.5, since I think Kiwoom should be able to score a decent amount on their own. The plays I’ll go heavier on are OV 11.5, 1H OV 6.5, and NC TT OV 6, since both teams should be able to make an early dent into the opposition’s starting pitcher. I’ll also make a smaller play on NC -1.5, because I do think there’s a very real chance they get to 8-9, which will give Kiwoom hardly any kind of shot at keeping up.

HITTING: 7th in average, 5th in runs

Game Plays:

1: NC TT OV 6 (-130) 2U

2: OV 11 (-120) 2U

3: 1H OV 6.5 (-115) 1U

4: NC -1.5 (-105) 1U

 

 

G2: Hanwha Eagles (+130) VS LG Twins (-160) O/U 8

Eagles:

SP: Warwick Saupold

            2019 ERA: 3.51

            2020 Stats: 2.25 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 28 IP, 21 H, 6 BB, 15 K (starts vs SK/Kiwoom/Lotte/NC)

Saupold has been nothing short of terrific this season, producing consistent start after consistent start each of the last two years. Furthermore, he is good for distance, giving 100+ pitches in every one of his starts, meaning we don’t have to rely as heavily on bullpens that have been terrible for practically every team. This points towards a nice potential under game, which is supported by the total sitting at a lowly 8. LG has been a solid-hitting team this year, sitting at fourth in average and runs, but they really haven’t overly impressed me against good pitching. They’ve produced games of 9+ runs with decent frequency, but at the same time seem to put up 3 or less oftentimes as well. I’m really not that sold on them as a team, and think that especially in a game tonight where Hanwha should be able to count on a good outing from Saupold, we shouldn’t look at LG’s 15-run outburst last night as an indicator of what’s going to happen here. I like LG to be low-scoring, but I want to look at their starting pitching before making a decision.

HITTING: 8th in average, 9th in runs

Twins:

SP: Casey Kelly

            2019 ERA: 2.55

            2020 Stats: 5.79 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, 14 IP, 18 H, 10 K, 3 BB (starts vs NC/Kiwoom/KT)

I absolutely LOVE Kelly in this spot tonight. He’s supremely underrated due to a few small spots this season, including an opener vs NC that can sort of be attributed to outside factors and an outing vs KT in which he gave up 4 unlucky runs in the first before throwing the next five scoreless. He finally has an opportunity tonight against a team that really can’t hit, and I have full confidence in him not only to pitch well, but to potentially dominate the lifeless Eagles. Having already discussed Saupold, I love the under in this game even more, and think we have a very strong play on UN 8 here. I’m also more than willing to put smaller additional plays on 1H UN 4 and Hanwha TT UN 3. These are all low lines, but tonight we’ll be seeing two of the best starters in the KBO match up, and average/below average hitting teams. It’s a nice combination for an under.

Game Plays:

1: UN 8 (-120) 2.5U

2: 1H UN 4 (-115) 1U

3: Hanwha TT UN 3 (-105) 1U

 

 

G3: KT Wiz (+125) VS Kia Tigers (-150) O/U 9.5

Wiz:

SP: Hyeong-jun So (3.5/10)

            2019 ERA: N/A

            2020 Stats: 6.48 ERA, 1.56 WHIP, 16.2 IP, 23 H, 6 K, 3 BB (starts vs Hanwha/Samsung/Doosan)

Ironically, So’s best start of the season came against Doosan, where he put up a very respectable 5 IP / 5 H / 2 ER statline. Since then, things have been a disaster, as he’s allowed 18 hits in his last 11 innings of work, all coming against two of the worst teams in the KBO in the form of Samsung and Hanwha. His matchup tonight is somewhat in the middle – Kia is the very definition of middle of the road, ranking 5th in average and OPS, and 7th in runs – so the question is whether or not we’ll see a serviceable version of So, or the one that’s gotten absolutely hammered by two lower-tier teams. Taking a look at his more advanced stats, his FIP of 4.21 does suggest that there is positive regression on the way, and he’s also only 18 years old, so he clearly has enough talent at a young age to be starting in Korea’s highest league. With all this in mind, I’m really not sure where I stand on So – I do think he’s going to get a lot better, perhaps even in the course of this season, but I don’t love where he is right now. Additionally, another question is whether or not all the contact he gives up will hurt him; he could potentially flash a 6+ inning start with the number of hitters swinging early in counts, but at the same time he’s gotten pulled after less than that on two occasions. This could spell trouble for KT’s bullpen, so we’re in a tough situation with what we want to do here. Let’s look at Kia.

HITTING: 2nd in average and runs

Tigers:

SP: Hyun-jong Yang

            2019 ERA: 2.29

            2020 Stats: 3.43 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 21 IP, 16 K, 6 BB, 18 H (starts vs   Kiwoom/Samsung/Doosan/SK)

Yang was arguably the best pitcher in the KBO in 2019, and after a rocky start to 2020, he’s been progressively better and looks to finally have regained his prior form. His most recent two starts – vs Doosan and SK – have been terrific, as he struck out 7 in six solid starts vs the Bears, and threw 6 scoreless innings with 5 strikeouts against the Wyverns. Tonight, he has another tough matchup on the slate vs a KT team that has been terrific in 2020, but after an absolutely torrid stretch they have slowed down a little bit, scoring more than 5 in only two of their last six games. Additionally, with how much their bullpen has struggled, they are extremely dependent on having a good starter, which is not as much the case tonight as their previous few wins. With that in mind, I really like the Tigers here – Yang gives them an opportunity to win any given game, and though the Wiz are no doubt a solid-hitting team, Kia should potentially only have to score around 4 to win, which I believe they’ll be able to do.

HITTING: 5th in average, 7th in runs

Game Plays:

1: Kia ML (-155) 2.5U

2: Kia 1H ML (-150) 1U

2: UN 9.5 (-105) 1U

3: KT TT UN 4 (-110) 1U


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