The NC Dinos and Kia Tigers finalize a brief two-game series on Wednesday at Kia Champions Field. The Dinos got started early and often on Tuesday to take a 8-0 lead. They tacked on some more runs as their lead ballooned to a 10-1 advantage over the Tigers. The Tigers had no answer, and the Dinos looked like the best team in the KBO with a 13-3 victory.
The Dinos have been up and down in October, but that could be a game that gets them going just at the perfect time before the postseason. For the most part through October, the Dinos have not looked like a team that leads the league.
Losing Chang-mo Koo from their rotation is one big reason why, but I think they might have experienced some boredom sitting atop the standings by such a comfortable margin. Despite going 4-8 in their previous 12 games, the Dinos are 81-52-4 on the season with a five-game lead on the Twins for first in the KBO.
It will be important for the Dinos to get into postseason mode now mentally. They haven’t been playing like a focused baseball team for the greater part of the last month, so this ten-day make-up period can be used to get their heads on straight. If that was their intention last night, then it worked brilliantly, as everything was going well for the Dinos.
That loss might have been a kill shot to the Tigers’ postseason bid. They’re running on fumes right now and will likely have to settle for sixth in the KBO. The Tigers go into Wednesday’s contest against the Dinos with a record of 69-66-0. Average enough, but not good enough to be a playoff team in 2020. Ki-young Im is slated to get the starting nod for the Tigers in this one.
A strong performance against an opponent like the Dinos could do a world of good for his confidence going forward. He’s ran into some problems against the Dinos this season, so a quality start to get the bad out of his head would be a positive. The Dinos are expected to counter with Min-hyuk Shin. Shin on the bump really makes Dinos’ fans miss Koo a lot. Head below for our free NC Dinos vs. Kia Tigers pick for October 21, 2020.
NC Dinos vs. Kia Tigers KBO Baseball Betting Odds:
NC Dinos vs. Kia Tigers Prediction:
The Kia Tigers were stunned last night before they knew what hit them. The Dinos racked up 4 runs in the top of the 1st frame, and then did the same the next inning to go ahead by a score of 8-0. There have been some crazy comebacks in the KBO, including a game just last week which saw the Dinos erase a similar deficit, but coming back down from 8 runs against this team is no easy assignment.
The Tigers need to get a better effort on the mound in this one, but Ki-young Im has not liked facing the Dinos. Im has posted an ERA of 6.75 in three starts against the Dinos in 2020. He recently pitched against the Dinos on October 15 and was far from perfect, though it could have been much worse.
Im conceded 5 hits, 4 walks, and 3 earned runs through 5 innings for a 5.40 ERA and 1.60 WHIP. It’s the fifth straight start that Im has allowed at least 3 runs. In only one of those games did Im post a sub-5.00 ERA. He finished the last two seasons with an ERA of 6.26 and 5.73, so he will record a 5.00+ ERA for the third consecutive year. In his seven-year KBO career, Im has netted a 5.19 ERA and 1.58 WHIP through 444.1 innings of play.
The Dinos’ bats were hot on Tuesday, and there is a good chance that their hot hand carries over into Wednesday versus Im. Min-hyuk Shin must do his part in helping out on the hill, though. Shin has gotten roughed up for an ERA of 5.91 and 1.63 WHIP as a 21-year-old rookie. After struggling mightily as a starter in September, Shin was moved back to the bullpen where he stayed until this start on Wednesday.
Shin posted an ERA of 10.11 and 2.18 WHIP through his last three outings as a starting pitcher. He conceded a total of 11 earned runs in 11.1 innings of work. Two of those games weren’t against very good offenses either, as the Wyverns and Eagles made it look easy with Shin on the bump. I wouldn’t be shy about pulling the trigger on the OVER in this spot.