I’m sure most of you living in Korea are not working today. August 15th is Independence Day, and that means baseball starts at the slightly earlier time of….eh….6pm! The weather is still too hot during the day for the KBO to even consider a 2pm start, which is a pity, because the earlier games around Children’s Day are always a lot of fun.
Anyway, this is Tuesday’s pitching line up, thanks to mykbo. Week 2 of the 2-day series. Unfortunately, we are unlikely to see Brian writing his reviews for a few weeks after he injured his hand going 0-3 during a game in Cheongju last Sunday.
As stated in the caption, we have compiled our own ratings system on the importance of these games today, but also for the rest of the week’s series (coming later). 1 * indicates a game or series of some importance and 3 * tells you this is massive. 2 * is somewhere in between.
Kt Wiz v LG Twins *: this is a big series for LG only but they’re a very admirable 9-2 over the wiz for 2017. A win on Tuesday is far from secure, however. Ryan Feireband is one of the top 3 pitchers in the league, despite his win-loss record. He has a 2.95 ERA and 1.16 WHIP. At any of the top 3 clubs, Feireband would probably be sitting on 12+ wins.
Our prediction: spilt series.
NC Dinos v Kia Tigers ***: This is a huge series for a number of reasons. The Dinos, seen by many as champions in waiting, have slipped down to 3rd after losing both games in Jamsil last weekend. Meanwhile, the Tigers have seen their big lead over Doosan Bears whittled down to just 6 games, and they face the Bears next. These teams have spilt their 12 games down the middle but Tigers have Yang Hyeon-jong looking for his 17th win against Ku Chang-moo, who won’t want to be reminded of his last outing in Gwangju.
Our prediction: 2 wins for the Tigers.
Doosan Bears v Lotte Giants **: Doosan lost twice last week but remain the league’s most inform side and will fancy this trip to Busan with Yoo on Tuesday and Michael Bowden on Wednesday. They boast a narrow 6-5 record over Lotte this season, but face a young starter who hasn’t thrown a lot of pitches this year and who has a high ERA and WHIP .
Our prediction: put the house on a Doosan sweep (sorry Matthew).
SK Wyverns v Hanwha Eagles *: at one point this season, we thought SK could challenge NC for second, but their form since the mid-point of July has been atrocious and suddenly they’re in 7th spot, 3 games back from 5th. They’ve also lost Han Dong-min for the season. Last time out, Scott Diamond threw really well against LG Twins and he’ll need to again today. Hanwha’s Ogando (6-4, 3.77 ERA, 1.35 WHIP) is another guy who’d be pretty excellent at a playoff team. Hanwha have also bossed their meetings with the Wyverns this season, winning 8 of their 12 games.
Our prediction: Hanwha to win on Tuesday but SK to take Wednesday and continue their win-loss-win run.
Nexen Heroes v Samsung Lions *: after a mixed week, Nexen could really do with 2 wins here and, fortunately for them, they do have a solid 8-4 record over the 8th placed Lions this season. But today’s game screams runs, two starters unlikely to finish 5 innings and bullpen mishaps that ensure it is a long night in Daegu. Jeong Dae-hyeon (Nexen) is 3-7 with a nasty 6.61 ERA and 1.67 WHIP in 65 innings pitched. He’s 1-1 v Samsung in 2017. Kim Dae-woo (Samsung) is 2-5 with a whopping 9.73 ERA and 1.90 WHIP in 45 innings pitched.
Our prediction: Nexen to win both but it won’t be pretty.
There are more huge games this week.
Thursday and Friday
Hanwha Eagles v NC Dinos *
Kia Tigers v Doosan Bears ***
LG Twins v SK Wyverns **
Lotte Giants v Nexen Heroes ***
Samsung Lions v kt wiz *
Saturday and Sunday
Lotte Giants v Hanwha Eagles *
NC Dinos v Nexen Heroes **
Doosan Bears v kt wiz *
SK Wyverns v Kia Tigers **
Samsung Lions v LG Twins *
Finally, in case you missed it, GSKBO sat down with Doosan Bears pitcher Michael Bowden at the weekend. Here he spoke about the brilliance of catcher of Yang Eui-ji, tossing a no-hitter in the KBO and how much he loves playing in front of the Jamsil crowd.
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