Rakuten Monkeys vs Uni Lions Pick – CPBL May 12, 2020

If you haven’t caught a CPBL game yet this season, I strongly encourage you to do so.

We are 12 hours to the left, if you will, to Taiwan.

So, most games are aired in the US on the east coast around 0600 hours or 6:00 AM for the laymen.

The Rakuten Monkeys have a strong grip on first place in the CPBL over the rest of the league with a record of 14-4 while the Uni Lions at 8-13 sit alone at the bottom of the standings.

Rakuten has the bats!

The Monkeys are hitting .348 as a team and have taken opposing pitchers deep 28 times in 18 games.

The Uni Lions aren’t as consistent with their offensive output but can get hot at any time and easily match your output with the bat in your hands.

The Lions have 30 homers this year, 2 more than the Monkeys, albeit in 3 more games played.

It is still impressive for a last-place team in the CPBL to mirror the Rakuten offense on any stat line.

The Monkeys have won 4 of 5 and the Lions have dropped 4 of 5.

Both teams are coming off of a rest day, though, as the league doesn’t have games on Mondays.

BetOnline.Ag has the betting odds for tomorrow’s game.

Let’s break down the pitching matchup and make our predictions for the Rakuten Monkeys @ the Uni Lions.

Rakuten Monkeys vs Uni Lions

Run Line

  • Rakuten -2.5 (-120)
  • Uni +2.5 (-120)
Money Line

  • Rakuten (-250)
  • Uni (+175)
Run Total

  • Over 14.5 (-120)
  • Under 14.5 (-120)

The Uni Lions snapped a 4-game losing streak on Sunday when they lit up the Fubon Guardians for 10 runs.

Right fielder Lin An-Ke was 4-4 with 3 runs scored and 2 batted in. He went deep for his 7th blast of the year.

The Monkeys are hitting .348 as a team and have taken opposing pitchers deep 28 times in 18 games.

Shi Ziqian improved his record as Lions’ starter to 3-1 on the year only allowing 2 earned over 6 innings.

HEADING TEXT HERE

The bullpen held strong for the next three giving them some relief heading into w new week after dropping 4 in a row.

The Rakuten Monkeys sent Wang Yizheng to the mound and the wily vet did his job giving up 3 runs over 6 ⅔ innings pitched.

When your offense averages 8.3 runs/scored per ball game, giving up 3 runs over 6 innings is usually enough to get you the victory.

Wang improved to 4-0 on Sunday.

DH Zhu Yuxian “lowered” his batting average below .450 but smacked his league-leading 11th home run in the 6th.

The solo shot proved to be the difference as the Monkeys held off the Chinatrust Brothers 5-4.

Taking the mound on Tuesday for the Uni Lions will be Donn Roach.

I thought about giving him a nasty nickname but his last name is already roach so he gets a pass for today.

I honestly feel bad for the guy too.

I thought the Lions would have sent him to the minor league by now. They must be paying him the league max salary many foreigners are accustomed to.

Keep him throwing, though. We are 2-0 picking against him.

He has given up 23 earned runs in 4 starts and sports an ERA of over 10.00 and a WHIP north of 2.00.

Opposing him for the Rakuten Monkeys will be 21-year-old right-hander Weng Wei-Chun.

He is 2-1 in 3 starts this season with an ERA of 5.82 and a WHIP of 1.41 over 17 innings pitched.

I think he can get the win here but he is going to have to keep the ball in the park.

The Lions can get warm bats very quickly and they lead the CPBL in homers.

He has 72 batters on the season and allowed 3 longballs.

That’s pretty good. This is because he likes to keep the ball on the ground with more than a 2/1 ratio of ground balls to fly balls.

Conversely, Donn Roach for the Lions is at 5/4 grounders to fly balls.

These are the two best home run hitting teams so more bad news for Roach.

The Chinatrust Brothers did have the best statistical pitching in the league as a team but now the Rakuten Monkeys are the only team with an ERA south of 5.00.

Monkeys starter Wei-Chun has faced each team in the league once and had strong outings vs the Guardians and Brothers giving up just 4 earned over nearly 14 innings pitched.

It was the Unity Lions who were able to get him, though, on April 26th.

10 hits including 2 homers and 7 earned runs allowed over just 3 ⅓ innings pitched…

This was one day after the Unity Lions handed the Monkeys their first loss of the season in a highly-emotional comeback and walk-off win at home.

Wei-Chun and the Monkeys did not have Uncle Mo’ on their side when they lost to the Lions 12-5.

I do believe he will have a better performance this time around. I guess you can’t do much worse than 7 allowed over 3, though.

He has 2 quality starts to one bad one, though, and Roach has 4 bad ones and nothing else.

I have been leaving the over/under bets alone lately as the sportsbooks have adjusted accordingly.

  • We have won 5 in a row, though improving our season record to 11-5.
  • Wagering 1 unit per game, our return on investment is 33.8%.

I don’t expect this number to stay this high but I feel like we have done a good job keeping up with the sportsbooks on what was a new league for them also.

I definitely don’t think I could jump into MLB and do as well. There are 30 teams and the sportsbooks are well aware of all the strengths and weaknesses of each.

Whenever Major League Baseball returns, you guys have to follow our writer Jason Gray.

He has a very impressive and profitable ROI over 1500 games picked.

For this game, I can’t get behind (-250) for the Monkeys. I would advise against betting on any baseball favorites over (-200).

The Lions are streaky and they are coming off of a win after losing 4 in a row.

I do have to take that into account but their starter has had ZERO successful outings.

Each bullpen has been pitching well lately and coming off of a day of rest so banking on relievers to “likely” blow it isn’t advisable.

If I thought the Lions had Wei-Chun’s number, I would say smash the over 14.5 runs as this one could be 10-7 or more.

I think they were still fired up from the big game the night before.

They will probably touch him up for a few over 7 innings but I have a feeling the Uni will be making the call to the bullpen before the 4th.

I don’t like to chase 2.5 run lines but against the worst performing starting pitcher of the 2020 season, let’s take it.

My Picks
RAKUTEN MONKEYS -2.5
-120

In Conclusion

The CPBL returns after their normal Monday off of work.

This will be the first full week fans were allowed in the park!

Taiwan gave the league the green light last week and 1,000 fans were in attendance.

They had to sit 3 seats apart but hey, baby steps.

Even though I think this virus has been slightly overblown by the media, go figure right, I still think it’s imperative we start back slowly or we could get shut down again.

Donn Roach remains in search of a solid start in 2020. I don’t think facing the rested Rakuten Monkey bats is his best opportunity to do so but crazier things have happened.

He has stunk it up and Rakuten’s Wei-Chun has had one bad outing, albeit against the Uni Lions.

Even if he gives up 5 runs, I don’t think Roach will outduel him.

Get your pick in now, guys, and enjoy the game tomorrow morning if you can!

Mike Pruitt / Author

Mike has been covering sports professionally since 2017 but on the amateur scene for 25 years since when he was 12. Before the internet changed the world, he would keep detailed statistical box scores of NFL and NBA contests, write recaps, and voluntarily commentate games and fights alone in his room. Mike's military experience, Bachelors Degree, and employment thereafter were always rooted in engineering, science, and teaching. Now he enjoys being able to express himself through writing about football, golf, and car racing among other sports but most of all fighting as his life has been rooted in mixed martial arts including competing and teaching for the past 15 years.