This article is part of our DraftKings KBO series.
Thursday's five-game slate is an intriguing one from a DFS perspective, as we have a number of pitchers sporting ugly metrics taking the hill. The top end of the pitching pool is solid but not completely elite in the true sense of the word, and there are several one-off bats to choose from that appear to be set up in ideal situations for fruitful nights.
As customary, I'll highlight what I consider to be two of the safer pitching options at different price points, followed by some one-off hitters across the salary scale that could also prove profitable for cash games and/or tournaments. I'll then recommend two stacks that I trust the most to potentially string some above-average offensive numbers together and pay off for you in tournaments.
Jake Brigham ($10,000) already has one quality start against the same Giants squad he'll face Thursday, having held Lotte to three earned runs over seven innings back on June 2. The right-hander has forged double-digit DK-point tallies in five straight starts, and he also had hauls of 26 and 25.6 DK points earlier in the season, flashing an impressive ceiling. He's also been at his best at home, posting a 3-1 start, 21.1 DK points, a 1.40 ERA and .211 BAA across four starts, and although there's a tough matchup on tap against a Lotte squad that hits very well despite its ugly record, he's one of the few viable arms on the slate.
Ariel Miranda ($9,400) is now averaging 21.1 DK points per start after accumulating 26.8 against Kiwoom over seven innings in a no-decision last Thursday. The former MLB left-hander has eclipsed 20 DK points in six straight starts, and in eight of 10 trips to the mound overall. Miranda has also averaged more DK points per road start (23.1) than per home outing (20), and he already tore through Hanwha for a season-high 31.3 DK points back on May 26. The Eagles are a very appealing target, considering they're averaging the second-fewest runs (3.9) and fewest hits (7.7) while posting the lowest team batting average (.236) in the KBO.
Baek Ho Kang ($5,900) impressively still has his average over .400 (.401) a whopping 68 games into the season, and he boasts a 1.076 OPS as well. There's really no category Kang isn't capable of checking off, as he boasts 15 doubles, one triple, nine home runs, 57 RBI, 50 walks and even seven stolen bases. He's hitting an outstanding .405 with runners in scoring position and .458 versus Twins pitching, and he gets a premium matchup against LG starter Chan Kyu Im. The veteran right-hander is having a nightmare of a season, posting a 9.26 ERA and 2.06 WHIP across three starts despite managing a quality starts against the Landers his last time out.
Jung Hoo Lee ($5,700) draws a matchup Thursday against vulnerable Giants starter Enderson Franco, who's given up multiple earned runs in five of the last six trips to the mound. Lee has been relatively quiet of late, but he still checks in with a .341 average and .942 OPS across 72 games, numbers partly comprised of 29 doubles, four triples, three home runs, 46 RBI and six steals. The lefty-swinging five-year veteran has hit well over .300 in each of his first four seasons and is sporting a .351 average with runners in scoring position, and he's already tagged Lotte pitching for a .387 average, 1.067 OPS and 11.5 DK points per contest over eight games this season.
Jose Fernandez ($4,900) is another proficient bat in a prime matchup Thursday, as he's boasting a .328/.405/.469 slash line with nine doubles, nine home runs and 44 RBI over 66 games. He's been at his best on the road as well, where he's managed a .341 average and average of 8.9 DK points in 33 games, and he's also battered Eagles pitching for a .333 average and 10.8 DK points per contest in six encounters with Hanwa. Eagles starter Si Hwan Jang makes for a nice target Thursday, too, as he enters with an 0-7 record, 5.18 ERA, 2.02 WHIP overall, and 15.00 ERA, 3.33 WHIP and .438 BAA in one prior start versus Doosan.
Min Ho Kang ($4,600) enters Thursday's appealing matchup against Landers starter Jeong Bin Kim, who's forged an 0-1 record, 9.45 ERA, 2.18 WHIP and .294 BAA across four starts, wielding a hot bat. The slugging catcher is hitting .324 and boasting a 1.066 OPS across the last 10 games, a stretch during which he's averaged 10.2 DK points. He's also particularly thrived versus SSG pitching, posting a .421 average, 1.522 OPS and average of 16. 2 DK points over five prior games, and he owns a .339 average and .951 OPS over 34 home games.
Sun Bin Kim ($3,800) has a modest 14 extra-base hits overall in 63 games, but he's managed to still drive in 31 runs thanks in part to an impressive .333 average with runners in scoring position. The veteran infielder is also a highly dependable contact hitter (6.8 percent strikeout rate) and has greatly enjoyed his encounters with Dinos pitching, which he's touched up for a .476 average, 1.274 OPS and 11.2 DK points across six games. NC starter Myung Gi Song could help facilitate one of Kim's better outings, considering he has a 7.99 ERA, 1.87 WHIP and .348 BAA over six road starts and gave up a single and RBI double to Kim in his one start against Kia earlier this season.
Stacks to Consider
Im's considerable vulnerabilities were already detailed in Kang's entry, and it's also worth noting the Wiz enter Thursday's matchup with the second-most runs (5.5) and fifth-most hits (9.2) per game while also forging a solid .271 team batting average.
Cho makes for a very cost-effective way to kick off the stack, with the veteran outfielder able to contribute in a variety of ways despite not having any home runs thus far in his four-plus seasons in the KBO. Cho does have 29 RBI thanks to a .355 average with runners in scoring position, and he's also contributed seven steals while hitting .292 at home and posting a .400 average, .964 OPS and average of 11.2 DK points in six prior games against LG.
Hwang checks in with a .306 average and 9.2 DK points per contest in his last 10, and he has a very similar .314 average and 9.4 DK points per contest for the season. He's also furnished a .333 average and 9.5 DK points per contest in six games against LG, furthering his case.
Kang's attributes were already discussed earlier, while Bae carries a reasonable salary to round out the stack with and checks with a solid .282 average and .779 OPS, along with some well-rounded counting stats that include 16 doubles, four homers, 34 RBI, eight steals and a .271 average with runners in scoring position. The veteran has also averaged 7.3 DK points on the road and against Twins pitching this season.
The details of Jang's very poor season thus far were enumerated earlier in Fernandez's entry, and additionally, it's worth keeping in mind the Bears are ranked in the top half of the league in runs per game (5.2), hits per game (9.4) and team batting average (.275).
Heo is enjoying a strong season, as he'll enter Thursday with a .309 average, .778 OPS and 19 extra-base hits across 64 games despite a slow start to the campaign. He's also been at his best when traveling, as he boasts a .329 average, .869 OPS and 8.9 DK points per game across 35 road contests.
Fernandez was discussed in detail earlier, while Yang has authored a .289 average, .872 OPS, 30 extra-base hits (14 doubles, 16 homers) and 49 RBI across 70 games. Like Heo, he's thrived outside of his home park, forging a .316 average and belting nine of his 16 homers when traveling on the way to an average of 9.7 DK points per 35 away contests. And, he's punished Hanwha pitching all season, churning out a .440 average and massive 1.462 OPS with the help of four homers across six previous games against the Eagles.
Finally, Kim is an affordable bookend to the stack, one that checks in wielding a very hot bat. The outfielder has posted a .393 average and 1.028 OPS across his last 10 games, a stretch during which he's accumulated a trio of double-digit DK-point tallies. He's also hit 100 points better on the road (.330) than at home (.230), and his track record against Hanwha this season includes a .462 average and 1.072 OPS across five games.