How about Taiwan?!
Cheers to them for finding a way to put on sporting events that HOPEFULLY will not cause a negative impact during the COVID-19 global pandemic.
Well, they have fans at the game. That’s not a good start. Hear me out, though. While there are cheerleaders and journalists in attendance, the fans will actually be robots!
— CPBL STATS (@GOCPBL) April 7, 2020
Pretty wild, huh?
I know the outlook for society is bordering on dystopian at this point and the idea of robot fans could naturally freak anyone out but let’s focus on the game and save the apocalyptic hypotheses for another day.
Betting odds can be found on many different sites but I grabbed the lines for Friday’s game off of BetOnline.AG.
Before we make our pick, let’s quickly go over the CPBL ruleset and how it may differ from what we are accustomed to with Major League Baseball.
Chinese Professional Baseball League Info and Rules
- The normal 60 feet from the mound to home plate and 90 between the bases
- 120 games played split into two half seasons
- 4 teams
- Chinatrust Brothers
- Fubon Guardians
- Rakuten Monkeys
- Uni-President 7-11 Lions
- One team will be playing in the minor league and join the major league in 2021
- Wei Chuan Dragons
- Each team has a minor league or futures team that is double the size of their normal 26-man roster
- These teams will have the Roman numeral “II” next to their name
- No pitchers will hit so it’s like the American League with a designated hitter
- Games will not exceed 12 innings. If it goes that far, it’s a tie.
- Teams are allowed 4 foreign players on their rosters with 3 active and only 2 on the field at any given time
- How to watch: Check out Eleven Sports on Twitter for games IN ENGLISH!
- Premier pitching is at a premium in the CPBL.
- Expect more hits and more runs as the league has averaged over 1 run higher/game than the MLB
- CPBL hitters need 8 more at-bats on average to hit a home run, though
⚾| 2020/4/16 The only #LIVE Pro-baseball game on EARTH on ELEVEN SPORTS. Watch here for the 2020 #CPBL season #UniLions vs #RakutenMonkeys#ForTheFans #ELEVENSPORTS in ENGLISH!!! https://t.co/Rgm5VbPfVU
— ELEVEN SPORTS TW (@ElevenSportsTW) April 15, 2020
Those are just the basics. We will learn how to read between the lines as the season progresses and thus our knowledge base grows.
For now, lean towards the over for a run total kinda like we were hammering unders for as long as the XFL was around.
In football, lower level play apparently means lower scores but in baseball, the inverse appears to be true.
Let’s go ahead with our predictions for Friday’s game between the Future teams of the Brothers II vs Dragons.
Chinatrust Brothers (Elephants) II vs Wei Chuan Dragons
There is no run line for this game. Hopefully, as the season plays out, the sportsbooks will begin to offer it.
This is a minor league game and it will likely begin around 1:00 AM Eastern Standard Time. As far as the minor league teams go, you will see “II” next to their name denoting their minor league status.
Just keep in mind that the Wei Chuan Dragons have just one team and only play in the minors until next year.
The major league games are played around 6:00 AM Eastern while the minors kick off at 1300 Taiwan time. Got it? Good.
The Wei Chuan Dragons enter this contest with a record of 5-8-1 while the Chinatrust Brothers II are in first place with a record of 9-4-2.
Determining who is the home team who is away was challenging but it looks like Chinatrust will be hosting the Dragons.
The former is undefeated at home with a record of 6-0-2 while Wei Chuan is just 1-4 with 1 draw away from their spot.
Even on a fairly small island, it appears that home-field advantage is a thing. I guess the robots in the stands are doing their job.
For all the teams, the best away record is 5-4-1 while the worst home record is 2-3-0. Until we are proven wrong, we can say home vs away is important.
These two teams have split the season series thus far 1-1 with 1 draw.
Let’s take the home Chinatrust Brothers II and also go over the run total of 13.5.
I mentioned CPBL teams’ dominance at home so far this season and each team averages 14+ combined runs per contest so I think we are getting good value at nearly even money (-110).
And we’re off!
I have to tell you that the sports betting community is a strong one! A resourceful one as well!
It didn’t take my colleagues and me to start picking Russian table tennis matches for you guys as well as car racing simulations.
Now, we actually have the opportunity to bet on a live MAJOR sport.
Baseball is pretty big in Asia, especially Japan and popularity is increasing every year in South Korea. Japan has suspended the start of its season but South Korea is set to go in less than a month’s time.
The Chinese Professional Baseball League out of Taiwan has some pretty solid players.
The best prospects usually get snatched up by Major League Baseball teams rather quickly but with a delay and possible cancellation…don’t shoot the messenger-just trying to be realistic, the CPBL could have it’s most popular year ever.
They are already off to a good start. I will tell you that. Between the minor and major leagues of CPBL, we have 9 teams and games 6 days a week.
Check back regularly for our picks!