KBO Daily Fantasy Baseball Helper: Thursday 6/18/20

Tyler Wilson and the LG Twins should be able to capitalize on an easy matchup against the Hanwha Eagles. Who else should we roster on Thursday morning's slate?

South Korea's KBO League is bringing live baseball back in our lives, and that means the return of daily fantasy baseball with real cash prizes on FanDuel!

First pitch on Thursday is at 5:30 am ET, and official lineups typically come out an hour before game time at the earliest.

Scoring is identical to what we see in MLB DFS, but FanDuel is condensing the number of starting spots to seven. You start one pitcher as usual, and then only need to roster two infielders, two outfielders, and two utility players to fill out the rest. Your total team salary is also $100 instead of $35,000.

Some websites that can help you get started include MyKBO Stats, FanGraphs, and Baseball-Reference.

Below is an overview of tonight's starting pitchers sorted by FanDuel salary with their 2020 numbers. Opposing team stats are also from this season. Multi-year park factors from the Korean website, Statiz.

Note that on FanDuel these hurlers are listed by their team names (ex: "SK Starting P"), so those are also included.

PitcherSalaryL/ROpp.FIPERAWHIPK%BB%Opp. R/GOpp. K%Park
Chang-mo Koo
Dan Straily
Tyler Wilson
Drew Gagnon
Jong-hoon Park
Odrisamer Despaigne
Hui-kwan Yu
Yoon-dong Heo
Seung-ho Lee
Shi-hwan Jang

Let's check out which pitchers and stacks stand out on tonight's slate


It's a Chang-mo Koo (NC Starting P; $30) slate, so you know what that means. Koo is doing a vintage Clayton Kershaw impression these days, with a godly 30.1% strikeout rate that other hurlers can only dream of in the KBO. The Kia Tigers aren't the type of offense that should concern us against Koo, particularly with their top two sluggers batting lefty (Preston Tucker and Hyung-Woo Choi).

Of course, Koo's exorbitant salary restricts your stacking options, in which case Tyler Wilson (LG Starting P; $26) is an easy way to save a few bucks against the Hanwha Eagles, who remain the league's worst offense by a wide margin. Wilson and the LG Twins are massive -310 favorites on FanDuel Sportsbook.

The other three arms priced at $26 or above all have tantalizing strikeout numbers but are risky plays against tougher opposition. Of that group, I like Dan Straily (Lotte Starting P; $28) as a possible contrarian play. He has the third-best strikeout rate on the board, and while the Kiwoom Heroes are no walk in the park, their run-suppressing venue could help Straily avoid trouble.

Odrisamer Despaigne (KT Starting P; $24) is the top value arm, drawing a plus matchup against the SK Wyverns, the only team aside from Hanwha averaging fewer than four runs per game. A 3.51 FIP and 14.9% strikeout-minus-walk rate suggest he's performed far better than his 4.60 ERA would indicate.


The LG Twins are a top stack tonight, particularly with star slugger Roberto Ramos ($17) expected to be back in the lineup tonight.

They face Hanwha's Shi-hwan Jang, a right-hander who's struggled to consistently find the plate with a 14.3% walk rate. Although he's managed to use that erratic approach to also produce a 23.1% strikeout rate, that's about where the good news ends, as the results haven't been pretty.

In addition to Ramos hopefully returning -- who still leads the league with 13 dingers -- the Twins boast sluggers Hyun-Soo Kim ($14) and Eun-Sung Chae ($12), and Chun-Woong Lee ($9) remains cheap atop the lineup. Kang-Nam Yoo ($8) is showing nice upside lower in the order, and keep an eye on Ji-Hwan Oh ($9), who's moved up to second the past two games.

The Lotte Giants have settled into the bottom half of the league in runs per game, but they have enough punch to have the occasional big night, and we could have that against left-hander Seung-ho Lee. The 21-year-old has pretty rotten numbers across the board and only posted a 15.4% strikeout rate and 9.6% walk rate in 2019, too.

The Giants should have a righty-heavy lineup, with Ah-Seop Son ($13) likely being the only lefty stick in the top half of the order. Son's fantastic plate skills keep him in play (8.3% strikeout rate and 14.3% walk rate), along with right-handed batters like Jun-Woo Jean ($12), Dae-Ho Lee ($10), and Dixon Machado ($10). Hoon Jung ($9) hit leadoff in his return after sitting out a month with an abdomen injury.

Even though they're facing a lefty, you probably don't need me to tell you to stack the Doosan Bears against Yoon-dong Heo, an 18-year-old making just his third KBO start. He's recorded just one strikeout over 10 innings.

Lastly, the Samsung Lions face veteran Hui-kwan Yu, who isn't missing many bats with an 8.5% strikeout rate. Yu must induce a fair bit of soft contact -- he somehow got by with a 9.3% strikeout rate in 2019 and has usually outperformed his FIP over his career -- but you're leaving yourself up to the mercy of the baseball gods when your strikeout rate is this low.

No Lions batter is priced above $9, making them an ideal pairing with pitcher Chang-mo Koo or the pricey Doosan Bears. Tyler Saladino ($9) continues to perform well in his first KBO campaign, tallying 6 homers and 4 stolen bases with a .414 wOBA and .243 ISO.