Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Week 17 Rankings and Things

For the KBO week of Tuesday, July 26 to Sunday, July 31. Week records in brackets. Typhoon season has not passed yet on the Korean peninsula, only the SK/Lotte and Samsung/Kia series' went ahead mid-week.

1. Samsung Lions, 4-1

This might finally be Samsung's year. This team's ability to lead, come back from behind, and generally out play their 7 enemies in the league is quite a thing for the baseball watcher. Statistically, Samsung's weakness is their offense: their team .259 batting average is good for only 6th in the league.

2. Lotte Giants, 4-1

LG might have had an off week, but their 4-1 week takes Lotte into the playoff picture with a demand of respect from the Korean baseball world. Hong Seong-heung has raised his average to .299 after early struggles and Jang Won-joon (9-3, 3.63) has been absolutely lights out

3. Kia Tigers, 2-4

Still a playoff team, going through an injury spell. Their offense is on fire hitting .276, good for first in the league, and tied with Lotte above. Yoon Suk-min will be the best pitcher in the league for this season and all eyes will be on him to make the move to the majors.

4. SK Wyverns, 3-2

Steadying their ship with a 5-5 record in their last 10 games. Split a series with Lotte and then won a series against Hanhwa this week. You still can't write off this team as their 3.47 team ERA is still good for tops in the Organization.

5. LG Twins, 1-1

LG did lose their playoff positioning, but they only played 2 games to defend it. Snatching Son Seung-rak from Nexen, pretty much the only effective pitcher on that team, will help LG lots as they fight off Lotte in the playoff race.

6. Hanhwa Eagles, 1-2

Avoiding last place in the league standings but they are still last in offense (.331 team BA) and defense (5.20 team ERA) in league standings. Ryu Hyun-jin, at 8-6, 3.66 is not putting up numbers that we're going to write e-mails home about, and he's the only pitcher doing anything special on this staff. There's still a lot of work to do.

7. Nexen Heroes, 1-2

KBO's version of the blockbuster trade done with this team. Trading away their best pitcher, Son Seung-rak, pretty much signifies Nexen throwing in the towel. When you go to a Nexen game, you will see fans wearing Hyundai Unicorns gear, which is the Heroes' heritage. It's a wonder why this literal loser of a team does not embrace their history as the Unicorns, a very proud and respectable baseball franchise.

8. Doosan Bears, 0-3

Doosan Bears are arguably the most popular franchise in the KBO. SK Wyverns might have won the most championships in recent years, and Kia and Samsung might be winning a lot, but SK is a new franchise and Kia and Samsung play in smaller cities. The only issue with a team like Doosan losing as compared to a team like Nexen losing is that people will care, and Doosan's management will have to take notice.

Edit: It's not Son Seung-rak I'm talking about up there, I'm talking about Son Sin-young. I was drinking alcohol as I was writing this up ha ha.

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