2020-05-22 06:35:00 EDT
The Rakuten Monkeys (16-6) and the Uni Lions (10-16) will meet on Friday, May 22nd for a 1st Stage regular-season matchup in the Chinese Professional Baseball League (CPBL). This will be a battle between first and last place in the CPBL standings.
The last three days of the CPBL have been postponed due to weather, so each team in the league has earned a few extra days of rest. The last game for Rakuten was played on May 17th against the Fubon Guardians. The Monkeys dropped that game, 9-7, giving them their sixth loss of the season.
The Uni Lions were dismantled, 19-9, in their last game on May 17th against the Chinatrust Brothers. Uni has played the most games in the CPBL this season, and they also own the most losses with 16. Uni is 8.0 games behind Rakuten in the standings, so this three-game series is crucial for them to at least stay competitive.
Uni has trended downward lately, especially after their quite embarrassing loss to the Brothers. Yet, Uni has been the only team in the CPBL to have minor success against Rakuten this season, as they own the most wins (3) against Rakuten than any other team (Fubon has one and Chinatrust has two).
Rakuten has won three of their last five games overall, which is solid, but not as dominant as Rakuten would like. The Monkeys poured on the wins at the beginning of the season, but as of late, they have been proven to be beatable.
The betting line for this game shows that Rakuten is the huge favorite at -455 odds on the Win-Line. Uni opens as the major underdog with a +300 price. Obviously, there is not a chance I would take Rakuten on the Win-Line, as -455 is just plainly outrageous in a heads-up matchup. Even the run-line for Rakuten is quite much at -200 giving 1.5 runs. I think we make the value play in this game, as Uni has beaten Rakuten three times already this season. Of course, it is most likely not going to be easy, but at +1.5 (+150), I cannot pass it up.
I am taking Uni +1.5 in this one.