KBO Picks, Predictions, Betting Odds & Model (Wednesday, May 27): Should Bears Be Such Big Favorites vs. Wyverns?

Credit:

Han Myung-Gu/Getty Images.

  • The latest KBO odds make the Doosan Bears big favorites against the SK Wyverns
  • The Bears have won three of their past four games, including a 3-0 victory over the Wyverns on Tuesday morning.
  • Baseball betting expert Sean Zerillo picks out the KBO and CPBL bets that have the most value ahead of Wednesday morning's slate.

Four of the five games on Tuesday went under their closing total, with the lone over in the Doosan Bears-SK Wyverns game serving as a bad beat for under bettors.

The Bears put up five runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to take a 6-3 lead before the Wyverns settled the game on ten in the top of the ninth with a single, two advancements on a pair of wild pitches, and an RBI groundout – before their rally fizzled out.

In their 18 games this season, Doosan and their opponents have combined to score at least ten runs or more 15 times.

And in their past 15 games, either the Bears or their opponents have scored at least ten runs on their own, with an average 21.2 runs per game.

The third-place Bears (11-7) lead the KBO with a 130 wRC+, but they also rank eighth in Fielding Independent Pitching aka FIP (5.21) – making this team a boon for over bettors, often late in games.


wRC+ takes the statistic Runs Created and adjusts that number to account for important external factors — like ballpark or era. It’s adjusted, so a wRC+ of 100 is league average and 150 would be 50 percent above league average.


After blowing yet another lead on Tuesday, is this SK Wyverns (3-15) squad utterly dead in the water, or will the 2018 KBO champions still have some fight in them against the reigning champs?

If you are looking for more information about the KBO League, check out my season primer. If you want to know more about Taiwan’s CPBL, you can find that here.

  • KBO Year to Date: 24-30 (-0.82 Units)
  • CPBL Year to Date: 29-20 (+10.35 Units)

KBO Odds, Picks, Predictions & Betting Model


Odds as of 3 p.m. ET on Tuesday and via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.


SK Wyverns vs. Doosan Bears

  • Wyverns moneyline: +160
  • Bears moneyline: -205
  • Over/under: 10.5
  • Time: 5:30 a.m. ET
  • TV: ESPN
  • BET NOW

Probable Pitchers: SK Wyverns (Seung-won Moon) vs. Doosan Bears (Hui-kwan Yu)

If ESPN is hand-picking the games for their KBO telecasts, they are certainly putting my new favorite athlete, Hui-kwan Yu, in a position to succeed.

The lefty danced in and out of trouble when I backed him as an underdog in his last start against the NC Dinos – but he left the game with a 4-1 lead before the Bears bullpen surrendered 11 runs over the final three frames; including a nine-run ninth inning.

If you are unfamiliar with Yu, here are the highlights:

  • 140 innings pitched and ten or more wins in seven consecutive seasons
  • Posted a 3.25 ERA and 4.02 FIP in 2019 despite a 3.5 K/9 rate and a 1.5 K/BB rate
  • Averages 80.1 mph on his fastball
  • Owns a glorious array of eephus curveballs – which he’ll bring down to 49 mph

If you stick around long enough into that clip, you can also get a look at his sweet dance moves.

The Wyverns offense has struggled to a KBO-worst 70 wRC+ through three weeks – meaning that they have been 30% below league average, while the Bears offense (130 wRC+) has been 30% better than league average.

One of the league’s best hitters, third-baseman Jeong Choi (48 wRC+), who averaged 40 home runs from 2016-2018 and ranked near the top of the league in 2019 (147 wRC+), has struggled to start the 2020 campaign (.494 OPS).

SK hasn’t finished lower than sixth place since 2001 – their second season in the KBO – and if they want to bounce up from the bottom of the league standings then the power-hitting Choi – who is also the KBO record-holder for career hit-by-pitches, is going to need to get back to form:

Wyverns’ Wednesday starter Seung-won Moon is intriguing – the 31-year-old righty is off to a hot start (3.79 FIP) despite a 5.62 ERA, with 18 strikeouts against three walks in his first 16 innings pitched.

His FIP has steadily improved each season, to a career-best 4.80 in 2019, and he posted a 7.3 K/9 in 2018 – but he has had major home-run problems (career 1.5 HR/9) no matter the ball that the KBO has used.

However, perhaps Moon is a late-bloomer, and even if his home run issues persist, if he can continue to exhibit the same kind of command and breaking stuff that he has shown through his first few starts, he could take a significant step forward and shave a run from his FIP over a larger sample:

If Moon has truly improved, then he gives the Wyverns a legitimate shot at pulling the upset on Wednesday morning, as the soft-tossing Yu (5.06 FIP) had what was easily his best season in 2019 with the de-juiced ball.

I would look to play the Wyverns at around +200 (implied 33.3%), which is a 4.8% edge compared to my projection at 38.1%. I would be willing to bet the Wyverns at +193, a 4% edge, but if the number climbs that high, you might as well wait for a book to hang the +200.

Conversely, the Bears are bettable up to -145 (implied 57.8%), which is a 4.1% edge compared to my projection at 61.9%. Use our betting calculator to find your edge if you have different odds.

I projected the total at 10.3, and I doubt that you will find value on a Bears’ Over, but it would be actionable at 9.5 (+100) or 9 (-111) – either one of which is a 4% edge.

If the total creeps up to Under 12 (-115), consider that wager instead, as a contrarian play at a similar edge.

SK Wyverns vs. Doosan Bears Picks

  • N/A

[Bet now at DraftKings. CO, NJ, PA, IN, and WV only.]


Around the CPBL and KBO

As of 9:30 p.m. ET, I have four bets for Wednesday – two in the KBO, and two in Taiwan’s CPBL.

In the KBO, I projected the Eagles in a coinflip game (49%) at home against the LG Twins, with Min-jae Jang (3.99 FIP since the start of 2019) facing Chan-heon Jung (4.28 FIP) – a converted reliever for the Twins.

I give a slight edge to the Eagles in the starting pitching matchup and hope that this underdog, who manages to keep every game close, can finally put some runs on the board to support their pitching.

You can bet the Eagles down to +128 (implied 44%) a 5% edge compared to my projection. Use our betting calculator to find your edge if you have different odds.

I also bet the Lotte Giants for the second consecutive day against the Samsung Lions – jumping on their opening line at -116 (implied 53.7%) compared to my projection at 62.7% – a 9% edge.

Giants starter Se-woong Park has proven to be an above-average KBO pitcher (3.90 FIP; 3.69 in 2019), while 20-year-old Tae-In Won (6.18 FIP) is still figuring things out for the Lions – whose bullpen has yet to recover from a substantial workload last week.

Park’s curveball is a thing of beauty:

 

You can play the Giants up to -142 (implied 58.7%), a 4% edge. Use our betting calculator to find your edge if you have different odds.


In the CPBL, I also made two plays – each for one half of a unit, and I would set the following cutoff prices on those wagers:

  • Monkeys/Guardians Over

I projected this total at 13 runs, in a battle between Mike Loree and Justin Nicolino – two of the CPBL’s better pitchers.

I would bet the deflated Over up to 10.5 (-125), 11 (-115), or 11.5 (-105) – any one of which represents an edge around 5%.

  • Uni-Lions +175, (0.5 units)

Play the Uni-Lions to defeat the CTBC Brothers down to +140 (implied 41.7%), which is a 5.2% edge compared to my projection (46.9%), in a battle between a couple of young starters – Huang En-Sih (CTBC) and Shih Tzu-Chien (Uni-Lions):


Full KBO Betting Card for May 27

  • Hanwha Eagles +143 (1 unit)
  • Lotte Giants -116 (1 unit)

[Bet now at DraftKings. CO, NJ, PA, IN, and WV only.]

  • KBO Year to Date: 24-30 (-0.82 Units)

Full CPBL Betting Card for May 27

  • Monkeys/Guardians Over 10.5 (-112, 0.5 units)
  • Uni-Lions +175, (0.5 units)

[Bet now at DraftKings. CO, NJ, PA, IN, and WV only.]

  • CPBL Year to Date: 29-20 (+10.35 Units)

Zerillo’s Full KBO + CPBL Model, May 27

Download the Excel doc with my projections to input odds from your sportsbook. These projections cover the full game moneylines and over/unders. A sample of one of the sheets is below: 

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