Kia Tigers at Samsung Lions—2pm CT ESPN2
ESPN gives you a primer on the KBO with: Power rankings, top players, key storylines and more: Everything you need for KBO opening day.
Here’s some quick notes on today’s teams from the aforementioned article:
Kia Tigers: Considered the New York Yankees of the KBO and the biggest television ratings draw, the Tigers enter the season with a lot of pressure following the introduction of former National League Manager of the Year Matt Williams as their new skipper for the 2020 season. Now armed with the league’s most decorated (and highest-paid) manager, everyone from ownership to fans to management are expecting a big season out of the Tigers. The team made headlines during practice games for incorporating extreme shifts like those in Major League Baseball, an American baseball analytics trend that has not permeated the Korean game. Every KBO team is allowed three foreigners, and the Tigers signed pitcher Aaron Brooks and outfielder Preston Tucker before the 2020 season.
Samsung Lions: The Lions were one of the top teams of the 2010s, pulling off four straight championships from 2011 through 2014, but they have fallen off a cliff since their glory run. In recent years, the international scouting for the Lions has fallen short. “All of the guys they have brought over have been disasters,” Daniel Kim said. Recent international signings for the Lions included Deck McGuire, Justin Haley and Allen Webster, with most of the American pitchers performing below average during their time in the KBO. Former Rays top prospect Hak Ju Lee mans shortstop for the Lions and shows flashes of brilliance despite some inconsistencies on the field.
See you in the comments.