Hot Stove League (TV series)

Hot Stove League[1] (Korean스토브리그; RRSeutobeurigeu; lit. Stove League) is a South Korean television series that aired on SBS TV from December 13, 2019, to February 14, 2020.[2][3] The series stars Namkoong Min, Park Eun-bin, Oh Jung-se, and Jo Byeong-kyu. It revolves around a baseball team named Dreams, which has been the worst in the league for four consecutive years.

Hot Stove League
Stove League main poster.jpg
Promotional poster
Developed byHan Jung-hwan
Written byLee Shin-hwa
Directed byJung Dong-yoon
Music byPark Se-joon
Opening theme"Cue Sign" by Lee Won-suk
Country of originSouth Korea
Original languageKorean
No. of episodes16
Executive producers
  • Hong Sung-chang
  • Park Min-yeop
ProducerJo Eun-jung
Production locations
Running time59–63 minutes
Production companyGill Pictures
Original networkSBS TV
Picture format1080i (HDTV)
Audio formatDolby Digital
Original releaseDecember 13, 2019 (2019-12-13) –
February 14, 2020 (2020-02-14)

Hot Stove League received critical acclaim and several awards, including Best Drama at the 56th Baeksang Arts Awards.[4] Namkoong won his first Grand Prize (Daesang) at the 28th SBS Drama Awards.


The Dreams are a Korean professional baseball team that have placed last in the league for the past four seasons. When their general manager steps down, the team hires Baek Seung-soo, who has managed several championship winning sports teams, as his replacement, despite Seung-soo having zero experience with managing a baseball team. Facing shrinking budgets, infighting between the coaching staff and a team deeply set in their ways, Seung-soo uses his outsider's insight and the help of operations manager Se-young and Jae-hee to upend the Dreams' culture in a bid to create a championship winning team, despite the looming fact that every team he has managed before has folded after winning the championship.



The new general manager of the Dreams who was hired despite having zero experience managing a baseball team. He has a "golden resume", leading wrestling, ice hockey and handball teams to championships, but they all end up folding afterwards due to circumstances outside his control. He doesn't have a particularly nice personality but he is determined to make the team the best in the league.
The Dreams' operations manager. She is the only female manager in the league and is very passionate about her team despite their poor fortunes. Though she has been working in this field for ten years, she never gives up.
The president of the team and a junior managing director with Jaesong Group, which owns the Dreams, and the nephew of its chairman. He plans to shut down the Dreams as it is unprofitable, and hires Baek Seung-soo to help him do so, but soon comes into conflict with him when Seung-soo puts real effort into making the team successful.
Se-young's co-worker at the operations team. He got the job through his connections, but as time goes by he shows his passion for the team and works hard. It is suggested that the reason for his change in attitude is because he likes Se-young.


Dreams officeEdit

  • Son Jong-hak as Go Kang-seon, CEO of the Dreams team.
  • Lee Jun-hyeok as Go Se-hyeok, scout team leader.
  • Yoon Byung-hee as Yang Won-seop, scout team member.
  • Kim Do-hyun as Yoo Kyeong-taek, analysis team leader.
  • Kim Soo-jin as Lim Mi-seon, head of marketing team.
  • Park Jin-woo as Byeon Chi-hoon, marketing team leader.
  • Kim Ki-moo as Jang Woo-seok, scout team deputy head.

Dreams playersEdit

Dreams coaching staffEdit

Baseball officialsEdit


  • Kim Jung-hwa as Yoo Jeong-in, Seung-soo's ex-wife.
  • Yoon Sun-woo as Baek Yeong-soo, Seung-soo's little brother. An expert in sabermetrics, he uses a wheelchair due to a baseball injury as a teenager.
  • Yoon Bok-in as Jeong Mi-sook, Se-yeong's mother.
  • Jun Gook-hwan as Kwon Il-do, Jaesong Group chairman.
  • Lee Kyu-ho as Cheon Heung-man, a former wrestler who knows Seung-soo.
  • Lee Yong-woo as Gil Chang-joo / Robert Gil, a translator and a disgraced former pitcher.
  • Moon Won-joo as Kim Ki-beom, retired dreams player

Special appearancesEdit


Picture of Munhak Baseball Stadium (Incheon, South Korea) where filming took place.

The series is based on Lee Shin-hwa's screenplay, which was one of the winners in the 2H 2016 MBC Drama Screenplay Contest (Miniseries Category).[9]

Namkoong Min and Park Eun-bin previously worked together as second leads in Hur Jun, The Original Story (2013).[10]

The first script reading took place in September 2019.[11]

Munhak Baseball Stadium, home stadium of the South Korean professional baseball team SK Wyverns who gave their support to the series, served as a filming location and was used in one teaser poster.[12][13] Scenes taking place in California were filmed in Hawaii.[14]

After episodes 10 and 11 were divided into three parts instead of two, viewers expressed their discontent concerning the advertisements on the program's website.[15]

Following the success of the drama, the cast and crew went on a four-day reward vacation to Saipan on February 17, 2020.[16]

Original soundtrackEdit

Hot Stove League OST
Soundtrack album by
Various artists
Released20 December 2019–31 January 2020
LabelBlending Co., Ltd.
SBS Content Hub Co., Ltd.

Part 1Edit

Released on December 20, 2019 (2019-12-20)
1."Cue Sign" (큐사인)
  • Park Se-joon
  • Woo Ji-hoon
  • Park Se-joon
  • Woo Ji-hoon
Lee Won-suk (Daybreak)4:51
2."Cue Sign" (Inst.) 
  • Park Se-joon
  • Woo Ji-hoon
Total length:9:42

Part 2Edit

Released on January 3, 2020 (2020-01-03)
1."Mind"OneTopOneTopKevin Oh4:01
2."Mind" (Inst.) OneTop 4:01
Total length:8:02

Part 3Edit

Released on January 10, 2020 (2020-01-10)
1."As The Cold Wind Passes" (찬바람이 스쳐가며)
  • Han Joon
  • Park Se-joon
  • Lee Yu-jin
  • Park Se-joon
2."As The Cold Wind Passes" (Inst.) 
  • Lee Yu-jin
  • Park Se-joon
Total length:7:00

Part 4Edit

Released on January 17, 2020 (2020-01-17)
1."Another Day Is Passing" (하루가 저물어간다)
  • Jung Sung-min
  • Shin Ji-hoo
  • Jung Sung-min
  • Shin Ji-hoo
Kim Tae-hyun (DickPunks)3:46
2."Another Day Is Passing" (Inst.) 
  • Jung Sung-min
  • Shin Ji-hoo
Total length:7:32

Part 5Edit

Released on January 31, 2020 (2020-01-31)
  • ZigZag Note
Savina & Drones3:23
2."Down" (Inst.) 
  • ZigZag Note
Total length:6:46


Hot Stove League : South Korea viewers per episode (millions)
SeasonEpisode numberAverage
Source: Audience measurement performed nationwide by Nielsen Media Research.[17]
Average TV viewership ratings
Ep. Part Original broadcast date Title[18] Average audience share
(AGB Nielsen)[19]
Nationwide Seoul
1 1 December 13, 2019 My Name Is Baek Seung-soo And I'm the General Manager
(단장 백승수입니다)
3.3% (NR)
2 5.5% (16th) 5.8% (13th)
2 1 December 14, 2019 I am Going to Trade Lim Dong-gyu
(임동규 선수를 트레이드하겠습니다)
5.5% (NR)
2 7.8% (11th) 8.3% (7th)
3 1 December 20, 2019 It's a Team That's Bad at Baseball and Also Without a Future
(야구는 제일 못하는데, 미래도 없는 팀)
7.3% (14th) 8.3% (10th)
2 9.6% (6th) 10.3% (4th)
4 1 December 21, 2019 I'd Say It's an Unprecedented Scouting Scandal of a Professional Team
(전례 없는 프로팀 스카우트 비리가 아닐까 싶습니다)
8.2% (10th) 8.5% (9th)
2 11.4% (3rd) 11.9% (3rd)
5 1 December 27, 2019 Do You Want to Make a Bet? Let's See Who Is Laughing When We Arrive In Korea
(내기하실까요, 귀국길에 웃는 게 누군지?)
9.6% (6th) 10.1% (4th)
2 12.4% (2nd) 12.9% (2nd)
6 1 January 3, 2020[a] Did You Bring Someone Problematic From America?
(미국에서 뭐 문제 있는 애 데리고 왔어?)
11.6% (6th) 13.1% (4th)
2 14.1% (2nd) 15.4% (2nd)
7 1 January 4, 2020 Cut a Little Bit Larger
(삭감 폭이 좀 큽니다)
11.3% (4th) 12.5% (4th)
2 13.8% (3rd) 15.1% (3rd)
8 1 January 10, 2020 How Much Do You Want?
(얼마를 받아야 되는 겁니까)
12.2% (6th) 13.7% (4th)
2 14.9% (2nd) 16.3% (2nd)
9 1 January 11, 2020 Thank You For Letting Me Dream For A Brief Moment, Baek Seung-soo
(잠시나마 꿈을 꾸게 해줘서 감사합니다, 백승수씨)
11.8% (4th) 13.2% (4th)
2 15.5% (3rd) 17.0% (3rd)
10 1 January 17, 2020 Are We Evil?
(우리가 적폐입니까?)
12.9% (5th) 14.1% (4th)
2 15.5% (3rd) 16.6% (2nd)
3 17.0% (2nd) 18.4% (1st)
11 1 January 18, 2020 What Difference Does It Make If I Bring Them In?
(얘네들 데려오면 뭐가 달라져?)
10.7% (6th) 11.6% (5th)
2 13.5% (4th) 14.5% (4th)
3 16.5% (3rd) 18.1% (3rd)
12 1 January 31, 2020[b] Lim Dong-gyu VS Kang Doo-gi
(임동규 대 강두기)
12.0% (6th) 13.0% (4th)
2 14.4% (3rd) 15.2% (3rd)
3 15.3% (2nd) 15.5% (2nd)
13 1 February 1, 2020[b] I Trust Him, I'm Going to Check Whether the Rumors are True or Not
(믿지만 확인은 할 겁니다)
10.1% (6th) 11.2% (5th)
2 11.9% (4th) 12.9% (4th)
3 16.0% (3rd) 17.4% (3rd)
14 1 February 7, 2020 The Reason Why We Must Bring Back Lim Dong-gyu
(임동규를 다시 데려와야 하는 이유)
13.2% (6th) 14.4% (4th)
2 15.1% (3rd) 15.8% (3rd)
3 16.6% (2nd) 17.2% (2nd)
15 1 February 8, 2020 I'm Trying To Protect The Dreams At All Costs
(어떻게든 드림즈를 지키려고 합니다)
10.6% (6th) 11.6% (5th)
2 13.6% (4th) 14.6% (4th)
3 16.8% (3rd) 18.2% (3rd)
16 1 February 14, 2020 The Best Is For Sale
(최선은 매각입니다)
14.8% (5th) 15.8% (4th)
2 17.2% (3rd) 18.3% (3rd)
3 19.1% (2nd) 20.8% (1st)
Average 12.5% [c]
Special December 7, 2019 Hot Stove League Scout Report
(스토브리그 스카우트 리포트)
2.6% (NR)
Special February 15, 2020 Hot Stove League Final Report
(스토브리그 파이널 리포트)
3.9% (NR)
5.8% (NR)
  • In the table above, the blue numbers represent the lowest ratings and the red numbers represent the highest ratings.
  • NR denotes that the drama did not rank in the top 20 daily programs on that date.
  • N/A denotes that the rating is not known.

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Recipient Result Ref.
2020 The 241th PD Award of the Month PD of the Month Jeong Dong-yoon Won [20]
Lee Shin-hwa Won
56th Baeksang Arts Awards Best Drama Stove League Won [21][4]
Best Director (TV) Jeong Dong-yoon Nominated
Best Actor (TV) Namkoong Min Nominated
Best Screenplay (TV) Lee Shin-hwa Nominated
47th Korean Broadcasting Awards Best Drama TV Stove League Nominated [22][23]
Best Art Lee Yong-tak Won
15th Seoul International Drama Awards Best Mini-Series Stove League Nominated [24][25]
Outstanding Korean Drama Won
Best Director Jeong Dong-yoon Nominated
33rd Grimae Awards Best Picture (Drama) Stove League Won [26][27]
Best Actor Namkoong Min Won
Best Actress Park Eun-bin Won
Best Lighting Choi Jong-geun Won
14th Media Awards Excellence Award in a Terrestrial Content Drama Stove League Won [28]
SBS Drama Awards Grand Prize (Daesang) Namkoong Min Won [29]
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Miniseries Genre/Action Drama Nominated
Excellence Award, Actor in a Miniseries Genre/Action Drama Oh Jung-se Nominated
Excellence Award, Actress in a Miniseries Genre/Action Drama Park Eun-bin Nominated
Best Character Award, Actor Oh Jung-se Won
Best Supporting Actor Jo Han-sun Nominated
Best Supporting Team Stove League Won
Best New Actor Jo Byung-gyu Won
Ha Do-kwon Nominated
2021 25th Asian Television Awards Best Drama Series Stove League Nominated [30]
7th APAN Star Awards Top Excellent Actor in a Miniseries Namkoong Min Nominated [31][32]
Excellent Actress in a Miniseries Park Eun-bin Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Oh Jung-se Won
Best Writer Lee Shin Hwa Won
SBS Commendation Audience satisfaction target Stove League Won [33]
33th Korea PD Awards Best word for drama Stove League Won [34]
Talented actor Namkoong Min Won
WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival Platium Remi for TV series Stove League Won [35]


  1. ^ Broadcast is delayed due to the 2019 SBS Entertainment Awards broadcast.
  2. ^ a b Broadcast is delayed due to the 2020 Lunar New Year special broadcast.
  3. ^ Due to some ratings not recorded, the exact average rating is unknown.

See alsoEdit

  • Ted Lasso, American comedy series about an American football coach recruited by an English soccer team despite having no experience with the sport


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  2. ^ Jung, Hee-yeon (August 27, 2019). "SBS 측 "'스토브리그' 남궁민-박은빈 확정…'배가본드' 후속 편성" [공식입장]". Sports Donga (in Korean). Retrieved September 2, 2019.
  3. ^ Dong, Sun-hwa (December 26, 2019). "'Hot Stove League' hits home run with viewers". The Korea Times. Retrieved December 29, 2019.
  4. ^ a b MacDonald, Joan (June 5, 2020). "2020 Baeksang Arts Awards Honor The Best Korean Dramas And Films". Forbes. Archived from the original on June 5, 2020. Retrieved June 6, 2020.
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  13. ^ Kang, Sun-ae (December 3, 2019). ""이건 야구 이야기가 아니다"…남궁민의 '스토브리그', 첫 포스터 공개". SBS Fune (in Korean). Retrieved February 3, 2020.
  14. ^ Choi, Yu-jin (October 23, 2019). "남궁민, 양 손 주머니에 찔러 넣고 '스토브리그' 촬영중[SNS★컷]". Newsen (in Korean). MSN. Retrieved December 29, 2019.
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  35. ^ "WorldFest Houston Film Festival – worldfest houston where film fanatics can showcase their film making talents".

External linksEdit