Zerillo’s CPBL Betting Odds & Picks: Rakuten Monkeys vs. Uni-President Lions & Chinatrust Brothers vs. Fubon Guardians (April 26)
Gene Wang/Getty Images. Pictured: Chin-Lung Hu
The CPBL, the only professional baseball league currently playing regular-season games, is back in action on Sunday with a pair of games at 5:05 a.m. ET.
The CTBC Brothers (4-5) will visit the Fubon Guardians (3-6), and the Rakuten Monkeys (7-1) will face the Uni-President Lions (3-6), after finally losing on Friday in walk-off fashion.
For more information about the CPBL, check out my opening day betting guide.
Below, you can find the listed odds for Sunday’s games, alongside my projections, analysis, and wagers.
Rakuten Monkeys vs. Uni-Lions Betting Odds
Monkeys odds: -280
Lions odds: +215
First pitch: 5:05 a.m. ET
Probable Pitchers: Weng Wei-Chun (Rakuten) vs. Shih Tzu-Chien (Uni)
Saturday featured arguably the game of the 2020 season thus far between the Monkeys and Lions, as the home team stormed back from a 7-2 deficit, tying the game on a ninth-inning home run before walking off in the same frame:
Bettors must be assuming that the Monkeys cannot possibly lose two games in a row, betting Rakuten up to -280 (implied 73.7%) for Sunday — more than 10% higher than my projection at -152 (implied 60.3%).
Naturally, I see value on the Lions to pull the upset once again, and I have seen them listed as high as +238 (implied 29.6%) a 10% edge compared to my projection at +152 (implied 39.7%).
That certainly represents an actionable value on the Uni-Lions, and I may add some moneyline as we get later into the evening.
Thus far, I bet the Lions +3 runs (-106), a hilariously high game spread, for one half of a unit.
Additionally, I took the Over 12.5 (-110) in this game for an additional half unit, and a 4.8% edge compared to my projection at 14.45. I wouldn’t play this total above that number, however.
The Monkeys bullpen is a disaster, having allowed 20 runs in 22.1 innings pitched (8.14 ERA). It’s always liable to surrender runs in the later innings and can enable any offense to crawl its way back into a game.
The starting pitching matchup in this contest also created a new record for my highest projected CPBL total.
Monkeys righty Weng Wei-Chun had a strong 2020 debut, but he posted a 6.13 FIP and 5.31 DIPS ERA across 14 starts (70 IP) last season.
He does offer good velocity (92 mph) on his fastball but appears to lack major confidence in his secondary stuff.
Conversely, Lions starter Shih Tzu-Chien, who posted a 5.98 FIP and 5.08 DIPS ERA in 2019, has some pretty good breaking stuff, and he also had a successful first start against the Brothers (6 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 4 K).
This is a battle between a couple of young starters who are each improving, but there isn’t a massive difference between them at present.
As a result, the Uni-Lions look like the right side at such a big number, and I would recommend playing that +3 run line too, if you can find it.
CTBC Brothers vs. Fubon Guardians Betting Odds
Brothers odds: +112
Guardians odds: -140
First pitch: 5:05 a.m. ET
Probable Pitchers: Jose De Paula (Chinatrust) vs. Yu Ting-Wei (Fubon)
22-year-old Yu Ting-Wei is making his 2020 debut for the Guardians main squad after beginning the season in the minors, where he allowed six homers in 15.2 innings pitched (6.32 ERA, 1.79 WHIP).
Yu started seven times at the CPBL level last season and pitched to a 4.69 FIP and 3.98 DIPS ERA, including a 2-0 record against the Brothers.
Interestingly, his strikeout-to-walk ratio is so much better at the top level than it was in the minor leagues, and perhaps regression is looming.
He is slight in build, and light on velocity — with a fastball around 86 mph:
And his 2020 minor league performances are certainly concerning. Perhaps he fits better as a reliever.
As for Jose De Paula, the southpaw makes his third start of the season after a pair of solid efforts. The first came against Fubon on April 14 (7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 6 K) while the latter came on April 19 against the Lions (6 IP, 8 H, 4 R, 1 BB, 8 K).
De Paula has had prior success in foreign professional baseball, too, carrying a 3.66 ERA across 349 innings pitched.
His velocity from the left side (93 mph) and swing-and-miss breaking ball will certainly play at this level:
That said, the total for this game is exceedingly low at 8.5, compared to my projection for just about an average CPBL score.
I have this game lined as a pick’em, so the moneyline looks correct, but I bet an 11.3% edge on Over 8.5 (-110), and I would play that number up to Over 9 (-115), a 7.5% edge.
CPBL Bets for April 26
- Uni-Lions +3 (-106, 0.5 Units)
- Monkeys/Lions, Over 12.5 (-110, 0.5 units)
- Brothers/Guardians, Over 8.5 (-110, 1 unit)
CPBL Year to Date: 15-8 (+7.35 Units)