The Dongers Club - Thu Jun 18


Article / Content Announcement

The NPB (Japanese Baseball) league will begin play this Friday. DraftKings has already posted a slate which begin's at 5:00 AM on Friday morning and will have some names you recognize like Matt Moore, Adam Jones, Justin Bour, Corey Spangenberg and yes, Alcides Escobar just to name a few. Will I be covering the NPB as well? Possibly. I am going to look into doing a similar Data Dashboard for NPB like I did for KBO and there are a few promising aspects to this league

  • The promising: The player names are easier to recognize and should be a faster learning curve for many. We don't have last name first, first name last type issues and there is much more diverse set of names than the KBO has, so you don't get stuck wondering which Choi and which Kang and which Park to roster. There are two more teams in the NPB, which means the chalk should get spread out more and that's a positive thing.
  • The concerning: Start times are 5:00 AM EST which is 30 mins ahead of KBO, so we have the challenge of not knowing who is starting unless you are up in the middle of the night, get up early or stay up late (west coast folks). Quick glance looking ahead it appears that weekend slates will start most of the time at Midnight (Sundays) or 1:00 AM (Saturdays) EST. So if you ARE on the west coast, those are some very good spots to look at. Lineups usually post one hour before games, just as slow as KBO.
  • The other: DK has a new format for this league. It's similar to FanDuel and while I don't love it - I will admit that it's easier to build on. One pitcher, two infielders, two outfielders and two utilities. They likely did this because the NPB teams themselves don't designate roster positions for infielders. Although with 12 teams on the slates I would like there to be two pitchers still. But this is a minor issue and some may enjoy this format.

I am sure I will be learning a lot more about this league over the next few days, but I mention all of this to say simply that I do not know yet how exactly I'll tackle the NPB. Prize pools and accuracy of lineup information is going to dictate most of it.

I think you have seen quite honestly that the KBO slates have already become very routine in how to break them down. This was expected with limited size of teams and limited depth of quality players in the league, so really it's a matter of where to quickly focus on pitching and which teams to look at for hitting exposure along with any random nuggets I have. So my first expectation is to do that for both leagues. Almost like a cheat sheet/recommendation play combined into one article given the time in which the leagues start.

We'll see how it goes though.

KBO Slate for Thursday Morning

There is some rain issues, but we do have one game going on in the dome so I'm confident enough games go for the slate to run.

  • NC Dinos at KIA Tigers: Looks like lots of rain and this game has a very strong pitching match-up in it. So naturally this is your spot to make a decision on today. If you want to risk the rain both Chang Mo Koo and Drew Gagnon are guys who can put up big scores.
  • LG Twins at Hanwha Eagles: This is the second game with rain, although maybe not as bad. Tyler Wilson (LG) is the high chalk pitcher today if this game rolls.

Worth noting - it's the final game of the series here with no off-day tomorrow so we could see these games wait it out and play if they're not horrible.


Rain aside your top arms today are Chang Mo Koo (Dinos) and Tyler Wilson (Twins). But outside of them, consider:

Dan Straily (Giants) ... Settling into Korea with 3 of his last 4 starts being extremely good and even as an underdog against the Heroes I would trust him. The Giants are underdogs and in my mind are a great play because I expect their offense to give Seung Ho Lee problems.

Odrisamer Despaigne (Wiz) ... He is 4th on my list if all games play! But if the top two guys are knocked out then Despaigne and the likely 17 point outing he gives us is just fine.


GIANTS - I mentioned they have a good match-up against Seung Ho Lee. He's a lefty who has been shutdown vs LH bats but the Giants lineup right now is top heavy w/ RH bats with Dae Ho Lee (1B0 and Jun WooJeon (OF) ranking both in the top 10 of hard hit rates in KBO this season.

WIZ - When we discuss stacks and bad bullpens in KBO, the teams on the road always have that extra little edge knowing they're gonna bat in the 9th inning. That's why I have KT ahead of Doosan who is equally in a good spot today. The always expensive Mel Rojas Jr. is the best play for KT today but Baek Ho kang is equally good if he starts (questionable, but expected to go).


  1. Given that Chang Mo Koo and Drew Gagnon both look good on paper today, I would stack them together in the same lineup to factor against the risk of a PPD due to rain.
  2. Also given that there are rain issues, I see one team being the play to dominate this slate, so whoever you latch onto, go with a 5 man stack today to maximize on so much good pitching and the chances are all the offense on this slate comes from one spot -- unlike some slates where you can easily do 4-3-1 or 3-3-2 type configurations.
  3. All the good catchers are in rain spots, punt catcher + punt SHORTSTOP and that's how you'll fit in higher priced pitchers and the key core players from the stacks mentioned above.


OF - Mel Rojas Jr - KT Wiz - Chairman

1B - Dae Ho Lee - Lotte Giants

3B - Jae Gyun Hwang - KT Wiz

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