Uni Lions vs Rakuten Monkeys – CPBL June 9

The Rakuten Monkey bullpen failed us again!

In our last pick, we took the Monkeys over the Chinatrust Brothers on the moneyline of just (-130) so I thought we were getting an okay deal.

They were up 4-3 going into the bottom of the 7th and starter Justin Nicolino was starting to tire.

After putting some runners on base, the Monkeys defaulted to their abhorrent bullpen…

5 runs and one inning later, the score was now 8-4 in favor of the Chinatrust Brothers.

The Monkeys held on and won a one-run ball game in their next contrast against the Guardians.

The bullpen gave up 2 in the bottom of the ninth. Luckily, the Monkey bats were able to get 3 in the top of the inning to preserve the win.

Rakuten had a 6-4 lead heading into the bottom of the 6th and their relievers lost another game for them. The final was 9-6 Fubon over the Monkeys.

The Chinatrust Brothers are now tied in the win column with the Monkeys in the season standings but still have 3 more losses than first place Rakuten.

The Monkeys are all of a sudden very human.

You are only as strong as your weakest link and the kink in their line is without question the bullpen.

  • The team has lost 8 of their last 12 games played.

The Uni Lions haven’t exactly been the hottest team in the CPBL over the past few weeks either.

  • The last place Lions have lost 9 of their last 12.

The Monkeys have one of their best starters going on Tuesday but he has struggled against the Unity Lions.

Let’s examine the starting pitching matchup, look at the betting odds provided by BetOnline.AG, and make our predictions for the CPBL game between the first place Rakuten Monkeys and the last place Unity Lions.

Rakuten Monkeys @ Uni Lions

Run Line

  • Rakuten -1.5 (-115)
  • Uni +1.5 (-115)
Mone Line

  • Rakuten (-230)
  • Uni (+185)
Run Total

  • Over 13.5 (-115)
  • Under 13.5 (-115)

Taking the mound for the Rakuten Monkeys is 29-year-old hurler from Arizona, Ryan Carpenter.

Ryan has 7 starts this season with an ERA of 4.22 and a WHIP of 1.34.

He only has 3 decisions, though. That is partly because of the lack of effective relief pitchers on the Rakuten roster.

It has still been a solid season so far for the first-year CPBL pitcher.

He has struck out about 1 out of every 4 batters he’s faced but has also given up 50 hits in just over 42 innings pitched.

Of Ryan Carpenter’s 7 starts:

  • Carpenter has had 3 games where he didn’t allow a single earned run in a combined 18 innings of work.
  • He gave up 2 runs over 7 innings pitched against the Chinatrust Brothers in another start.
  • 4 impressive games, but in his other three, he allowed 18 earned runs over a combined 18 innings.

Two of those games were against the Monkeys’ opponents on Tuesday, the Uni Lions, including his most recent start on May 31st.

Carp threw just 5 innings allowing 9 hits and giving up 7 earned runs.

If the Rakuten Monkeys can’t get their bullpen to perform at a higher level, their starters are going to be under more and more pressure.

This is especially true with the Brothers now tied with them in the win column.

It is unclear how well Ryan Carpenter is going to do this week because he has been fairly inconsistent this season up to this point.

Chiang Chen Yen, left-hander from Taiwan takes the bump for the visiting Uni Lions.

This is Chiang’s 7th season with both the CPBL and the Lions.

He has a career ERA around 5.00 and a WHIP of 1.50.

Even though his team is in last place, they have come through for him this season a few times.

  • He is 3-2 with an ERA of an even 6.00.
  • In his 3 solid outings, Chiang has looked tremendous.
  • 18 innings and just 3 earned runs allowed.

Okay, not bad. Maybe the Lions have some value on the moneyline.

How has he fared in his other two starts and were those appearances against the Rakuten Monkeys?

Bad and yes. 9 innings, 18 hits including 5 home runs. 15 earned runs allowed! They smashed the guy.

The last few times we have broken down the starting pitching matchup in a Rakuten Monkeys game, we have been dead on.

It’s just becoming nearly impossible to bet on that bullpen.

33:26 fly balls to ground balls for Chiang.

He gives up too many fly balls and thus long balls.

I’m definitely not betting on him to all of a sudden have the sauce to beat the Monkeys.

I think Ryan Carpenter will have a good game. The Monkeys will probably go deep twice. A lot depends on how many guys are on base at the time.

  • 7-3 Monkeys going into the 7th.
  • From there, I can see a 9-6 final.

Rakuten gives up a few runs late but they also score a couple.

Let’s bet the over. This takes into account the brutalization of Chiang by the Monkeys and their bullpen finding a way to screw it up as well.

The Bet
Over 13.5 Runs

In Conclusion

The CPBL regular season is really starting to become more interesting.

They admitted that the baseballs the league was using are juiced and that said juice would be reduced at the halfway mark of the season.

Between the Lions’ starters and the Monkey’s relievers, I’m not sure which bunch will be more welcoming for the new baseballs.

Both groups have been hammered to death this season.

Please Note:
Betting the over 13.5 this week is taking into account that both of those groups of pitchers are likely to give up a lot of runs.

Rakuten does have a very solid pitcher on the mound in Ryan Carpenter but they have had his number 2 out of the 3 times they have seen him this year.

Lions’ starter Chiang Chen Yen has given up more fly balls than ground balls this season and I think that’s a big reason the Monkeys have lit him up as bad as they did.

Rakuten likes to get some air under the baseball and so do the Lions.

99 combined home runs for these two teams in 65 games played.

I expect some dingers tomorrow and the Monkeys to win but I just can’t bet on that bullpen any longer.

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.