This article is part of our DraftKings KBO series.
Rain originally looked like no more than a minor factor for Tuesday's KBO slate, but the weather took a turn for the worse and wound up leaving us with just two games. The Dinos exploded for 16 runs against the Eagles, with Jin Gi Jeong leading the way by going 3-for-4 with a homer, four runs and four RBI. Drew Rucinski had a strong night on the mound, striking out seven while allowing one run in six innings in the 16-4 victory. Elsewhere, the Giants pulled off a 4-2 upset over the Lions despite getting just four innings from starter Seung Heon Lee, with Chi Hong An driving in a pair of runs.
The rain appears to have gone away ahead of Wednesday's slate. Many of the stronger pitchers who were scheduled to throw Tuesday have been pushed back a day, leaving a fairly deep group of reliable options to choose from. Parts of this article will be pulled directly from yesterday's piece with over half the starting pitchers remaining unchanged.
With many good options available, you certainly don't have to pay up for Ariel Miranda ($10,200), but his status as the most expensive pitcher on the slate couldn't be more well-deserved. In the early part of the season, he was a dominant strikeout pitcher but walked too many batters to have a strong case as the best pitcher in the league. He hasn't walked more than two in any of his last 13 starts, however, a stretch in which he owns a 2.09 ERA and 0.92 WHIP. He's been on an even more incredible run over his last three outings, throwing 23 scoreless innings while allowing just seven hits. He now leads all pitchers in ERA (2.38) to go along with his longstanding lead in strikeout rate (30.8 percent). He's as matchup-proof as it gets these days, though it certainly doesn't hurt that he's facing the seventh-ranked Heroes lineup at the league's most pitcher-friendly park Wednesday.
Odrisamer Despaigne ($9,600) has been surprisingly effective this season, cutting his ERA from 4.33 in his KBO debut to 2.99, with a corresponding increase in his strikeout rate, which jumped from 16.4 percent to 22.9 percent. Despaigne's first three starts after the break were unconvincing, as he allowed 13 runs in 13.2 innings, but he's since gone on to throw a pair of quality starts, capping that off with seven shutout innings against the Heroes in his most recent outing. He should make it two good starts in a row Wednesday, as he'll take on the last-ranked Tigers lineup.
Don't be scared of Nick Kingham's ($7,700) matchup against the second-ranked Dinos lineup. That ranking doesn't reflect the unit's current talent level, as they're without five regulars due to suspensions and injuries. Their 4.7 runs per game in the second half would rank seventh in the league had they performed at that level all season. Kingham is having quite a strong season and is seemingly priced where he would be if the Dinos were still at full strength. A price this cheap for a pitcher who owns a 3.16 ERA, 1.09 WHIP and 21.4 percent strikeout rate is a steal. He's even more appealing considering that he's coming off three strong starts, a run in which he owns a 0.95 ERA, 0.89 WHIP and 21:4 K:BB.
While Suk Hwan Yang ($4,400) is priced as a second-tier option, he's been hitting like a first-tier bat of late. Over his last eight games, he's hit .467/.485/.933 with four homers and 14 RBI. The 30-year-old first baseman had never been much more than adequate in the past, topping out at a .758 OPS and 22 homers. His latest hot streak means he's now already set a new career high with 23 long bombs, and it would take a big slump down the stretch for him to avoid setting a personal best in OPS, as he now sits at .874 in that category. That number should rise Wednesday against 19-year-old Dong Hyeok Kim, whose respectable 4.08 ERA comes with a 19:23 K:BB.
If the Eagles had more reliable hitters, they'd be one of today's top stack recommendations against Dinos righty Tae Gyeong Kang, who owns a 5.40 ERA through just two career KBO starts. Hernan Perez ($4,200) is swinging a hot enough bat that he's worth consideration either alone or with his teammates. His .840 OPS through his first 18 games in Korea is already strong enough to justify his very affordable price tag, but his slash line rises to an excellent .339/.379/.593 if you ignore his poor 1-for-12 showing over his first three games as he was just settling into a new league and country. He has five multi-hit games in his last seven and should add another one here.
Joo Hwan Choi ($4,300) left Yang's Bears as a free agent over the winter and is suddenly having one of his best seasons at age 33. While injuries have limited him to 73 games, his 15 homers are already just one shy of the 16 he managed last season, the second-highest total of his career. In 10 games since returning to the starting lineup following his latest injury, a hamstring issue, he's hit an excellent .394/.474/.879 with five homers and 10 RBI. That hot streak should continue Wednesday, as he'll get the platoon advantage against Twins righty Chan Kyu Im, who owns an unintimidating 4.46 ERA and 1.49 WHIP through seven starts this season.
Sticking with the Landers, I love the idea of pairing Choi with Yoo Seom Han ($4,000) to get a pair of affordable bats hitting in the fourth and fifth spots in the order. Han is correctly priced below most of the league's top outfielders, but he's one of the best options in his price range. After homering 15 times in just 62 games last year while posting an .874 OPS, he's cleared the fence 20 times in 94 games this year while slashing .256/.353/.489. Much of that power has come since the break, as he's hit six homers and driven in 14 runs over his last 16 games.
I'm not sure if I'd want to pay up for the Wiz's big bats like Baek Ho Kang against former MLB pitcher Daniel Mengden, though his 4.06 ERA on the year isn't nearly strong enough to scare me away from some of the team's cheaper bats. Kyung Su Park ($2,000) represents excellent value for the absolute minimum investment and certainly deserves consideration. He was very poor in the first half, hitting a miserable .173/.253/.345, but the 37-year-old is clearly capable of much more than that, as he produced an .835 OPS as recently as last season. He's suddenly started performing at that level again since the start of the second half, hitting .292/.452/.396 with more walks (13) than strikeouts (12) over that stretch.
Stacks to Consider
We'll go back to another Lions stack here, as they're a compelling option whenever they play in their hitter-friendly home park against an unimposing starter. Kim certainly fits into that category. The 19-year-old lefty presumably has plenty of potential, as he was taken first overall in the most recent draft, but he's yet to show much of it this season. He opened the year in the rotation but quickly lost his spot after struggling to a 10.90 ERA, 1.96 WHIP and 16:17 K:BB in four starts. He's been better as a reliever, posting a 2.16 ERA in 16.2 innings, though that number isn't backed up well by his 1.62 WHIP. He's unlikely to go deep in this game, as he hasn't recorded more than three outs since June 19, though facing the Giants' low-leverage relievers is also an appealing prospect for the Lions' bats.
The fact that Kim will likely be out of the game early means you don't have to care too much about the platoon advantage here, but I've recommended a trio of righties nonetheless. Pirela is riding an eight-game hitting streak, a stretch in which he's homered twice while posting a 1.123 OPS. He continues to be particularly dominant at home, as he owns a .998 OPS at Daegu Samsung Lions Park and a .793 OPS elsewhere. Kang remains probably the best use of your catcher spot if you don't go with Eui Ji Yang. He's hitting .333/.397/.608 over his last 15 games. Lee keeps this stack affordable and is a name I often turn to when the Lions are at home, where he's hitting a very respectable .261/.370/.433.
It's impressive that the Landers have managed to stay in the playoff hunt given their injury troubles in the rotation. They've gone through tons of options, with Choi representing just one of 15 players who have started a game on the mound for the team, 11 of whom have made at least three starts. Wilmer Font is the only healthy starter on the team with an ERA below 5.00, however, and Choi is unlikely to join him any time soon. He didn't pitch well in relief, struggling to a 5.17 ERA and 1.82 WHIP in 31.1 innings, so it's hardly a surprise that he hasn't looked good as a starter, struggling to a 6.62 ERA in four appearances in the role. His first two, which took place on either side of the break, were passable, as he allowed three runs in 9.1 innings, but his last two have gone very poorly, resulting in 10 runs over 8.1 frames and a 5:8 K:BB.
A Twins stack can go in many different directions, as the team doesn't have any star hitters on hot streaks at the moment, but we'll go here with a mid-priced trio that hit third through fifth in the team's most recent game. Kim has just one hit in his last four games, but he hit .375/.432/.600 over the 11 prior contests and has a very long track record of KBO success, posting a career .895 OPS over 13 seasons in the league. Chae only just returned from a thumb injury Sunday and went hitless in that contest, but he's having a strong season, with his .310/.379/.524 slash line standing as an excellent mark for his price range. Seo, the 2014 MVP, is clearly past his peak and has been mostly mediocre this season, posting a .726 OPS. He owns a .341/.386/.463 slash line over his last 11 games, however, striking out just twice.