Foreign Pitchers Dominate KBO Leaderboards

If you look at the rosters of the KBO teams they are filled with Korean pitchers whose age range from 19 to 23 years of age. Many of them are starting for these KBO teams. That spells promise for the KBO if these native pitchers pan out. In the mean time, the best pitchers filling the leader boards in the KBO are foreign pitchers.

Most Wins

1) Drew Rucinski 18-4 (NC Dinos), 2) Raul Alcantara 17-2 (Doosan Bears), 3) David Buchanan 15-7 (Samsung Lions), 4) Odrisamer Despaigne 15-8 (KT Wiz), 5) Casey Kelly 14-7 (LG Twins), 6) Dan Straily 13-4 (Lotte Giants), 7) Eric Jokisch 12-5 (Kiwoom Heroes), 8) Aaron Brooks 11-4 (Kia Tigers), 9)So Hyeong-jun 11-6 (KT Wiz), 10) Mike Wright 11-8 (NC Dinos) 11) Park Jong-hoon 11-11 (SK Wyverns)

The top 7 pitchers in wins are all foreign born. It is when you get to the eighth spot that you have a four way tie, with two of those pitchers Korean born. There are ten teams in the KBO. Eight of those teams made decent investments with foreign pitchers who are in the top ten. The two teams at the bottom, the Hanwah Eagles and SK Wyverns are missing foreign born pitchers, though the Wyverns had a Korean pitcher make the top ten. The NC Dinos had two foreign born pitchers in the top ten.

ERA

1) Eric Jokisch 2.02 (Heroes), 2) Aaron Brooks 2.50 (Tigers), 3) Dan Straily 2.61 (Giants), 4) Raul Alcantara 2.67 (Bears), 5) Drew Rucinski 3.00 (Dinos), 6) Casey Kelly 3.23 (Twins), 7) David Buchanan 3.45 (Lions) 8) Moon Seung-won 3.65 (Wyverns), 9) Lim Chan-gyu 4.00 (Twins) 10) William Cuevas 4.10 (Wiz)

You have to jump to the eighth spot to get to a Korean pitcher. A different Wyverns pitcher made the list. The ninth spot also belongs to a Korean pitcher.

The top save leaders are all Korean pitchers, but that is because all the foreign pitchers are starters. Teams are allowed three foreign players on the roster with a maximum of only two foreign pitchers. If you look at strikeouts it is the usual suspects, expect that possible major league free agent Yang Hyun-jong of the Kia Tigers appears fifth on the list. He is having a down year ERA wise (4.56), but was one of the top pitchers in 2019.

One of the best Korean pitchers last year, Kim Kwang-hyun bolted for the major leagues. He turned into one of the top starting pitchers for the Cardinals after they began his season pitching in the bullpen. A Korean pitcher who would have fit at the top of the three major leader boards, the NC Dinos Koo Chang-mo was shut down with elbow issues after the first half of the season. He was 9-0 with a 1.55 ERA after 13 starts.

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