The Rakuten Monkeys are one of the most dominant teams in the Chinese Professional Baseball League, and so we thought we should introduce them first as part of our "Explainer Series." However, before discussing the Rakuten Monkeys, we need to delve into the history of the Chinese Professional Baseball League to understand their backstory.
With the Chinese Professional Baseball League currently underway, and fans beginning to appear in the stands, you may be wondering what the difference is between MLB and the CPBL. Read ahead to identify the differences, but let's just say the two leagues vary significantly.
The roots of Japanese professional baseball are traced back to 1934, where the first league was established known as the Greater Japan Tokyo Baseball Club. In 1936, the league was called the Japanese Baseball League, where it operated until 1949. It wasn't until 1950 that Nippon Professional Baseball officially formed.
New strategies are already in place for lineups on the offensive side, now that both leagues have a designated hitter. On the defensive side, though, the strategy is less clear. Read on as we take a look at the sabermetric tools that could impact the 2020 MLB season strategy on defense.