KBO DFS: The Argument for the Kia Stack

Stack the Kia Tigers because they are facing the worst pitcher on the slate. It’s that simple.

On Tuesday morning (does anybody really know what time it is?), the Kia Tigers host the Hanwha Eagles at 5:30 a.m, EST. The starting pitcher for the Eagles will be a 24-year-old right-hander named Min-woo Kim.

Kim probably has a pedigree to have been pitching so young in the KBO. Also, you have to be seen as The Golden Child to get an early-season start—let alone stay in the league—with numbers like his.

Kim has a 7.39 RA/9 and 1.42 HR/9 with only 6.50 K/9. That’s right, y’alls. Kim is more likely to come out of an inning giving up a run than striking a guy out.

As for the Kia bats to throw at this trainwreck, Hyung-Woo Choi is the leading power threat on the club. He had 288 HRs between 2008 and 2018 and is coming off of seven straight seasons with a .400-plus wOBA. He had an .897 OPS, which ranked eighth in the Organization (I just came up with that. Maybe I should just call the KBO “The O”), but only 17 homers in his age-35 season. Good to see him dong in game-two and hit safely in all six games this season.

Preston Tucker is the familiar American name, who finished 2019 15th in OPS (.860) and 12th in batting average (.311). The 29-year-old lefty also had a .394 wOBA. He has three homers through the first six games this year after nine all of last season. But this isn’t surprising because Tucker slammed 24 dongs across Double- and Triple-A in 2014, 24 again in 2015 across Triple-A and the majors, and 24 yet again in 2017 in Triple-A. Add that he finished sixth in The O with 33 doubles in 2019 and there is a lot of potential for total bases, runs, and RBI here.

Speed is good for steals, runs, and teammates’ RBI and therefore big fantasy games without HRs. I don’t know where Chan-ho Park ranks among tablesetters in The O, but he sure does seem like he’s among the most fun. A free-swingin’, very aggressive base stealer. He’s a perfect tournament play you avoid in cash. Struck out 83 times last year, but stole 39 bases. Only a .290 wOBA last year, though, so beware of the busts with the boom. No doubles power with only 15, but he’s leading off before Tucker and Choi, and did I mention the steals?

Ji-Wan Na is a curious one. He only had six HRs in limited play in 2019. I still don’t know why he only played 56 games, but he slugged over .500 from 2016-18. At 34, he is likely on the decline, but there is pedigree power there.

Kia will be high-owned, but they shouldn’t match Doosan chalk. Find a way to differentiate with your second stack and we should be fine.

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