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KBO Betting Picks (5/15/20) - Moneylines, Totals, and Runlines

We go from and 0-fer to a sweep. It was a great day and I'm happy to get back to winning ways, but I just want to say that nothing really changed in my decision making from Wednesday to Thursday. I'm not a sharp and I certainly don't have some crazy algorithm that makes my decisions for me. I run through the lines (which by the way come through really late compared to other sports), find what I see to be value and get to my research.

This league is certainly built for excitement and I'm glad that I'm not an absolute diehard fan of any of these teams, because so far we've seen no lead is safe past the sixth inning. You could say the same for just about any baseball game, but from what we've witnessed through just a week of games, the KBO is truly an experience that any sports fan should give a chance.

Today, I'll be bringing you my KBO analysis, advice, and best bets for Friday, May 15th at 5:30am EST. If you haven’t already, check out www.mykbostats.com; it’s is a fantastic one-stop-shop for us in America to get our KBO fix. You can also check out our KBO DFS lineup picks article after this one. Also, feel free to hit me up on Twitter @RotoStevieJ to talk shop or chew me out if a pick loses.

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Doosan Bears (-174) at Kia Tigers

O/U: 10.5 | ESPN2 at 5:30am EST

Probable Pitchers
Doosan: Hui-kwan Yu (0-1, 11.25 ERA)
Kia: Gi-yeong Im (0-1, 8.31 ERA)

The Bears offense is a juggernaut through eight games, hosting a .330 team average, .902 OPS, 59 runs scored, and 32 extra base hits. If that didn’t get my point across, the only counting stat that a Doosan Bear isn’t ranked first in is tripled and stolen bases. The southpaw Hui-kwan Yu is coming off a career year, and now age 33, Yu is still a big piece of the Bears rotation. He had a 2.49 ERA in five starts against Kia a year ago, and over 13 road starts, he carried a 2.85 ERA.

Kia is one of the hardest teams to gauge through the early going. While they have a -16 run differential, they’ve managed to hold a 4-5 record and just took a series against Hanwha. They’ve plated just 33 runs and their .712 OPS is either fifth best, or fifth worst, depending on your mindset. Gi-yeong Im is an interesting thrower of baseballs. He’s in his seventh KBO season but has appeared in just 106 games, making only 47 starts, including eight from 2019. He took the loss against Samsung on May 9, surrendering four runs in 4.1 innings, but did strike out six while only walking one. That’s boom or bust stuff against a dangerous lineup.

Early on I was leaning the over here, but looking at Yu’s success on the road (and against Kia) last year, I look for Doosan to hop on early and stay on top. However, keep in mind the Bears bullpen has struggled MIGHTILY so far, accumulating an 8.79 ERA. Let’s hope they can hold it down on Friday.

Pick: Doosan -1.5


Kiwoom Heroes (-124) at LG Twins

O/U: 9

Probable Pitchers
Kiwoom: Hyun-hee Han (1-0, 4.50 ERA)
LG: Chan-heon Jeong (0-1, 6.75 ERA)

At 6-3, Kiwoom has started off on the right foot and that's with their offense being one of the league's worst. A .230 average and .690 OPS hasn't hindered them from scoring 43 runs, but it's their pitching staff that has carried them. They lead the KBO with 3.38 ERA, five saves, and 61 strikeouts, but the most important thing is that they've issued just 17 walks. Hyun-hee Han returns to the mound after earning a win on May 9, after allowing three runs over six innings. After starting 58 games between 2015-18, Han made 61 relief appearances a year ago but is now working his way back into the rotation. Offensively, this lineup is bound to breakout anytime now. They scored 780 runs last year and while they lost Jerry Sands, they still have Byung-ho Park, Jung-loo Lee, and Ha-seong Kim to do the dirty work.

The LG Twins are riding a four game win streak and are working their way into a nice groove through the first two weeks. So their starter for Friday is an interesting one in Chan-heon Jeong. The 30-year-old has started done game in his career (May 7) after serving as either full-time or part-time closer since 2017. He's held down a 19.8 K% in that span, but also a 9.7 BB%. He only lasted four innings in his first start, so he's likely still building up stamina which doesn't bode well for him to last long enough to get in a groove. As a team, LG is hitting 71 points higher than Kiwoom an their 1-through-5 spot in the order is dangerous on any given day.

Jeong still working his way into starting throws me off of LG, despite their recent performance. Both teams have solid bullpens but I see the Heroes offense busting out of it's shell early against Jeong, allowing Han to go to work and earn a win.

Pick: Kiwoom -124


Samsung Lions at KT Wiz (-150)

O/U: 9.5 

Probable Pitchers
Samsung: Tae-in Won (1-0, 3.00 ERA)
KT: Hyeong-jun So (1-0, 3.60 ERA)

Samsung was able to scratch out back-to-back wins over Kiwoom to win the series. Now they get a floundering KT Wiz team that houses one of the bets hitters in the league. Tae-in Won is just 20 years old but has a full season of starting under his belt. He went 4-8 with a 4.82 ERA in 2019, but his 14 K% and 8 BB% is very worrisome. It's one thing to pitch to contact effectively, but it's another thing to rely on it, and it seems thats what Won does. Samsung's offense is far and away the worst in the league, but dropping 13 runs on Kiwoom over the last two games was a nice pick-me-up for the Lions. Dong-yub Kim and Sung-gyu Lee each have a pair of homers with sox or more RBI, but the Lions will need more from guys like Tyler Saladino and Won-seok Lee.

One beautiful thing about the KBO is they throw 18-year-old kids out on the mound against grown men, and they do pretty well too; Hyeong-jun So is that kid for the Wiz. He churned out five innings of two-run ball on May 8 to earn his first win. He also scattered five hits, struck out two, and walked one. We won't know much more about him until he gets more starts under his belt. KT's offense hasn't been a problem thus far, but it hasn't been a solution either. After scoring 25 runs in two games against Doosan, they scored just 10 in the last three against NC, including a game three shutout. As a squad, they're hitting .285 with a .768 OPS, and while Baek-ho Kang and Sung-woo Jang have produced, they'll need American Mel Rojas Jr. to add a little more beef to the lineup.

We have two kids on the mound in this one, and while both have given small glimpses of ability, I'm going to side with professional hitters in these situations almost every time. Both lineups have solid talent with experience that should be bale to pick these two apart. It also helps Samsung's case that KT's bullpen has an 8.48 ERA.

Pick: Over 9.5

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