Off to a slow start as Samsung’s import hitter, Tyler Saladino landed on the KBO’s injured list with a leg injury but can return when healthy:
#KBO injury note: Tyler Saladino of the Samsung Lions has been placed on 10-day injured list with some thigh issues. Team says it's not serious, he could even play, but felt he'd be better off playing at 100 pct than through any lingering pain.— Jeeho Yoo (@Jeeho_1) May 14, 2020
In a follow-up tweet, Samsung can activate Saladino ahead of the 10 days if he’s ready to return to action. Without him, the Lions scored the most runs (8) on Thursay’s slate which leaned to the pitchers. Taking center stage, the NC Dinos surged into first place moving to 7-1 behind Chang-mo Koo’s second win in as many starts this season. Before delving into the game action from Thursday, check out his awesome tweet highlighting bat flips courtesy of a lightsaber:
Nobody:— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) May 13, 2020
My brain: WHAT IF KOREAN BASEBALL, BUT WITH LIGHTSABERS pic.twitter.com/wg4peuNY6I
Starting Pitcher Spotlight
As alluded to above, Koo of the NC Dinos fired eight shutout innings allowing four hits and one walk with 10 strikeouts including the vaunted umpire punch out of the day:
Koo moves to 2-0 on the year and now leads the KBO in strikeouts (18), K/9 (11.6) and ERA (0.00) while sitting second in WHIP (0.64) through his first 14 innings.
In a no-decision, KT Wiz’s Je-seong Bae worked seven scoreless frames yielding seven hits and a walk with seven strikeouts.
Chris Flexen of the Doosan Bears won his second straight start in the KBO logging six innings giving up six hits, two earned runs and a walk with six strikeouts.
Hanwha’s Min-jae Jang earned his first win of the year working seven innings allowing five hits, one earned run and striking out five against the Kia Tigers.
A less than auspicious first inning hurt Drew Gagnon. He gave up four hits, four earned runs and a walk in the first inning then settled in throwing four shutout innings after limiting Hanwha to three hits with seven strikeouts in them. Once Gagnon overcomes his early struggles, he could be a reliable source of strikeouts in the KBO with 14 so far in 10.1 innings.
Both Jong-hun Park (SK Wyverns) and Tyler Wilson (LG Twins) pitched well in no-decisions in their match-up. They left the game with score tied at two. Park pitched five innings yielding six hits, two earned runs and two walks with seven strikeouts. Wilson logged six innings in a quality start allowing four hits, two earned runs and two walks with seven strikeouts.
Sang-su Kim (2B) - Tallied three hits in four at-bats with a run, double and an RBI.
Won-seok Lee (3B) - Went 2-for-3 with two runs, a double, a home run, two RBI and two walks.
Jose Miguel Fernandez (DH) - Bounced back with another multiple hit contest including his second home run of the season, scored two runs and drove in one. Fernandez owns a .531 average through eight contests.
Jae-il Oh (1B) - Racked up four hits in five at-bats. Oh doubled, launched his third home run and drove in three.
Jung-hoo Lee (OF) - Went 2-for-4 with a run, double and an RBI.
Byung-ho Park (1B) - Doubled in three at-bats with two runs, an RBI and walked.
Preston Tucker (OF) - Recorded two more hits in four at-bats including a double. Tucker owns a .406 average on the year.
Byung-hun Min (OF) - Hit the walk-off home run to win Wednesday’s game and led off the bottom of the first with his second home run of the season. Min finished 2-for-5 with a run, double and an RBI. Both home runs came on the first pitch with a hat tip to Jeeho Yoo of the Yonhap News for the tidbit.
Dae-Ho Lee (1B) - A perfect 4-for-4 day at the dish with a run.
Jamie Romak (1B) - Off the power snide hitting his first home run of 2020 after crushing 29 last year. Romak finished with two hits in four at-bats and could be on the precipice of a hot streak with home runs on tap in upcoming games.
Chun-woong Lee (OF) - Recorded two hits in four at-bats with a run, a double and a stolen base.
Roberto Ramos (1B) - Notched another multiple hit game going 2-for-4. He’s off to an eight-game hit streak in his debut in the KBO.
Ju-hyeon Jung (2B) - Jung hit two home runs all of last season. He launched his first of 2020 on Thursday going 1-for-2 with the homer and walked in three plate appearances.
Min-woo Park (2B) - Went 3-for-4 with a run, double and stole a base in the Dinos 1-0 win.
Aaron Altherr (OF) - Returned to the lineup after leaving Wednesday’s game early going 1-for-4 with the games only RBI and stole a base. NC needs Altherr to heat up heading to SK this weekend.
For those enjoying the KBO coverage, it appears we’re not the only ones craving baseball. Check out these fun tweets:
It’s nice to see the Durham Bulls joining James Grande and myself on the NC Dinos bandwagon. Plus, our favorite mascot gets top billing by Gritty:
Gritty ranking KBO mascots is just as hilarious as you’d think it’d be.— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) May 13, 2020
… and surprisingly accurate. ????https://t.co/Z5apQxKtVO
For the Friday slate, here’s next set of match-ups for three game series:
Lotte Giants (6-2) at Hanwha Eagles (3-6)
NC Dinos (7-1) at SK Wyverns (1-7)
Doosan Bears (5-3) at Kia Tigers (4-5)
Samsung Lions (4-5) at KT Wiz (1-7)
Kiwoom Heroes (6-3) at LG Twins (5-3)
More good news, a race at Darlington on Sunday joins the KBO in live sporting events along with UFC bouts on Saturday. Be sure to stay with Fantasy Alarm to remain ahead of the competition across all fantasy formats.