While MLB appears to still be at least a month or two away from restarting, we don’t have to wait any longer for some professional baseball and – most importantly – baseball DFS. The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) is underway and DraftKings is welcoming the KBO into the fold with contests for big prizes. On Friday morning, the action gets underway at 5:30 a.m. ET.
What do we know about the league? Who should we be putting into lineups? Let’s figure out all this together, position-by-position.
Set your lineups here: MLB $20K Check Swing [$5K to 1st] (Korean Baseball)
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What to know about the KBO
Chang Mo Koo, NCD vs. HAN, $9,400 – After Thursday’s game was rained out, Koo’s start has been pushed to Friday morning. By far, he’s been the best DFS pitcher in the KBO, averaging 29.2 DKFP with at least 22 DKFP in all seven of his starts. Koo is yet to allow multiple earned runs in a start this season. This isn’t a spot we need to put too much thought into. If Koo is starting, we have to roster him at this point.
Drew Gagnon, KIA vs. SAM, $7,800 – A former Mets’ pitcher, Gagnon is off to a solid start in the KBO. He averages 19 DKFP, the second most of any player on this slate. For this reason, it seems that Gagnon should be a priced a bit higher. There is also reason to think that Gagnon will be even better going forward. He has a 3.57 ERA compared to a 2.54 FIP. Gagnon has been really unlucky to have a 60.5% strand in his first KBO season.
Eui Ji Yang, NCD vs. HAN, $6,100 – For a high-end catcher, we are typically choosing between Yang or Dong Won Park ($5,600). These are the only two catchers in the KBO who are really producing any fantasy value and have also been the only two catchers priced over $4,000 for basically the entire season. Since Park is dealing with a knee injury, Yang is the only player to choose from as a stud catcher. This doesn’t mean he’s a bad play and he averages 9.2 DKFP, the most of any player at the position.
Kang Nam Yoo, LG vs. DOO, $3,900 – Per dollar, I think there’s a good case to be made that Yoo is the top catching option for Friday. He’s been playing extremely well as of late with a hit in 10 consecutive starts including a current stretch of straight games with double-digit DKFP.
Baek Ho Kang, KTW vs. LOT, $5,900 – Kang has been crushing baseballs since working his way back from a wrist injury. He missed nearly a month of action and is filling the stat sheet in a big way to make up for the lost time. He’s scored at least 11 DKFP in five of the last seven games, hitting three homers over this stretch. Kang is leaving no doubt about how healthy he is.
Joo Hwan Choi, DOO at LG, $2,100 – Now an everyday player for the Bears at nearly min price, it’s tough to not love Choi. There’s a good case to be made that he’s the best value play on Friday’s slate. Beyond just being cheap, he’s homered in back-to-back games and scored over 20 DKFP in each of those contests.
Sang Su Kim, SAM at KIA, $4,900 – Typically, Jose Fernandez ($5,800) is an easy choice to pay up for at second base, but he’s struggled as of late. Since Fernandez is expensive and has scored 6.0 DKFP or less in each of his last four games, I prefer to roster Kim at a cheaper price. He doesn’t deliver much power upside, but he’s consistently getting on base and is a stolen base threat. This has allowed Kim to score double-digit DKFP in three of his last four games despite not hitting a long ball this season.
Hoon Jung, LOT at KTW, $3,800 – On Thursday, Jung had his first bad game of the season. He went hitless and failed to reach base for the first time on a game that he started. Due to the amount of success Jung has had this year, I don’t mind jumping back onboard. He is averaging 9.7 DKFP, the second most of any second baseman this season behind Jose Fernandez.
Tyler Saladino, SAM at KIA, $4,700 – After a slow start to the season, Saladino started to heat up a couple of weeks ago and never slowed down. He’s scored at least a dozen DKFP in six of his last eight starts, making him the second-best third baseman based on DKFP average. Now that he’s more comfortable playing baseball overseas, it looks like Saladino is going to be one of the top hitters in the KBO.
Min Soo Kim, LOT at KTW, $2,400 – We don’t know much about Kim. He’s only started two games and has two hits in six at-bats. This has been good for an average of 7.5 DKFP. We are going to need to see the Giants’ starting lineup to see if he has earned himself more playing time since he’s been a new addition to the lineup. If playing, Kim looks like he could be a nice value play until his price goes up.
Jeong Choi, SK at KIW, $5,100 – Since shortstop base has been such a tough position to get fantasy production out of this season, Choi’s recent production really stands out. He’s hit four homers in the last four games, which is really crazy to think about since he only had two homers all year before this stretch. Perhaps equally impressive, Choi has only struck out once in his last seven games. This plate discipline is definitely playing a part in his increased power.
Ji Hwan Oh, LG vs. DOO, $3,000 – Easily, Oh is in the middle of his best stretch of the season. He’s scored at least 8.0 DKFP in seven consecutive starts and scored at least 12 DKFP in six of those games. Oh has eight hits in the last four games and is somebody who warrants consideration until he either cools down or his price goes up.
Hyun Soo Kim, LG vs. DOO, $5,200 – After homering on Thursday, Kim, the former Baltimore Oriole, is averaging 11 DKFP in his last four games. He typically doesn’t give us a ton of power upside, but since he has a .361 batting average, Kim has still managed to average 9.8 DKFP for the season. He has a hit in 10 of his last 11 games.
Jeong Dae Bae, KTW vs. LOT, $2,900 – First of all, his name is fantastic. More importantly for our DFS purposes, Bae has also proven to be a great hitter as of late. He’s scored at least 10 DKFP in five of his last seven games and his price is the exact same now as it was when this stretch first started. Bae also adds a bit of speed and has stolen bases in back-to-back games.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is gehrenberg) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.