Brief History of NPB Baseball
Japan is home to the second-largest professional baseball league in the world, the Nippon Professional Baseball League (NPB). This year’s NPB will include a total of 12 teams competing for the famous Japan Series championship.
There are 143 regular-season games played by each NPB club, resulting in a plethora of possibilities for bettors to uncover value, particularly for those who use an analytical approach to betting.
A reasonably stabilized lineup gives a compelling chance for data-driven bettors to capitalize on the situation.
There appears to have always been a dominant team in the NPB championship at some point in the league’s history. The Yomiuri Giants won four of the league’s first six championships (1951, 1952, 1953, and 1955).
The Nishitestsu Lions won three straight championships, which was followed by more dominance by the Giants, who won eleven titles between 1961 and 1973, including nine in a row from 1965 to 1974.
The Seibu Lions, who were formed from the ashes of the original Nishitestsu Lions, were very successful in the 1980s, winning a total of five championships before adding three more in the early 1990s to their collection.
The late 1990s and early 2000s were a time when the series became more competitive, with no one club dominating it. However, the Fukuoka Hawks have been dominant in recent years, winning the series every year between 2014 and 2020 with the exception of 2016.
However, their winning streak of four consecutive championships came to an end in 2021 when the Tokyo Yakult Swallows won the championship, becoming the first successful Central League champion since the Yomiuri Giants won the championship in 2012
Main Events During the Year
The biggest buzz in NPB is surely generated when victors of each Climax Series advance to the Japan Series. It is the NPB title and the equivalent of the World Series in baseball.
The Japan Series is played in a best-of-seven style. However, since games 1-7 might result in ties, the series could go on for eight or more games.
How Does Japan NPB Work
The NPB is the only major professional league in the nation, despite the fact that there are multiple high-caliber amateur leagues in the country.
The NPB was founded in 1936 and now has two leagues with six clubs. The Central League is comparable to Major League Baseball’s National League in that it is composed of the NPB’s oldest teams and does not have a designated hitter.
The Pacific League is similar to Major League Baseball’s American League in that it is a younger division that does use the designated hitter.
A total of 146 games are played throughout the NPB’s regular season, which starts in April and concludes in October. After this, the top three clubs from each league progress to the playoffs.
Each league’s first-place club advances to the best-of-five division final, where they will meet the winner of a best-of-three series between the teams that finished second and third in the league standings.
When the season ends, the winners of each league will face off in the Japan Series, which is a best-of-seven series that determines the NPB champion.
BetUS is a major US betting site that offers sports betting to bettors in a number of U.S. states. It is one of the most popular betting sites in the U.S., not least because of its excellent promotions and bonuses that attract bettors in the U.S.
However, NPB is not, by any means, a major betting market in the U.S., rather a niche one. And while BetUS offers bonuses and welcome offers to bettors to wager on bet on baseball, as of now, there is no specific bonus that applies to bettors looking for NPB baseball lines.
However, there are plenty of excellent bonus offers, a great welcome offer among them, that you can take advantage of as a general sports bettor.
There are significant distinctions between Nippon Professional Baseball and MLB that might influence Japan NPB baseball betting. To begin with, the baseball used in NPB is somewhat smaller than the one used in the U.S.
You may assume that a smaller baseball would result in more strikeouts and fewer balls in play, yet the strikeout rate in Japanese baseball is quite comparable to that of the MLB. Part of this might be because the strike zone in NPB is famously narrow (particularly for foreign pitchers), favoring the batters.
The size of the field is another important distinction between NPB and MLB games. While MLB fields vary in size and NPB stadiums are symmetrical, a reasonable rule of thumb is that Japanese parks have fences that are 10 feet closer than those in U.S. parks (except for center field, where NPB parks are 400 feet away).
So, what’s the bottom line in all of this? When it comes to betting, are NPB games really that different from MLB? The only way to tell for sure is to look at the numbers, and there is one area where Nippon Professional Baseball differs greatly from Major League Baseball:
In the NPB, there are much fewer runs scored.
Japanese clubs scored 4.03 runs per game in 2017, whereas MLB teams scored 4.65 runs per game. When you divide each team’s average by two (because each game has two teams), you’ll find that the average number of runs scored in an NPB game was 8.06, which is more than a run lower than the 9.30 average in Major League Baseball games. That may not seem like much, but it’s a difference of about 15%.
Lower-scoring games might have a number of consequences for your NPB betting strategy.
Aside from the apparent added value on the “Under,” the +1.5 run line in Japanese baseball has become a more powerful weapon. After all, the fewer runs scored in a game, the less probable it is for the favorite to win by a large margin.
Prop wagers are extremely popular in all kinds of betting, including on baseball games. Prop wagers are fun, interesting, and, last but not least, unpredictable.
MLB betting sites have large sections that are entirely dedicated to prop wagers. However, finding prop bets on NPB games is much harder, because NPB bets are more conventional, at least those offered by U.S. sportsbooks are.
However, if you do come across some, be sure to scan them for value and have a good experience wagering on them.