This article is part of our Dream11 Fantasy NPB series.
Chiba Lotte Marines (15-14) at Saitama Seibu Lions (14-13)
Friday, July 24th, 5:00 AM EDT
Saitama Seibu Lions: RHP Zach Neal (2-0, 4.75 ERA)
Chiba Lotte Marines: LHP Ayumu Ishikawa (0-2, 4.83 ERA)
The Lions and the Marines both are just one game above the .500 threshold, and both teams enter this matchup knowing the victory is a must to keep their playoff chances on the right track given how tight the Pacific League standings are. The Lions seem to enter this game in better form, though, as they've gone 3-2 in their last five games while the Marines have won just twice during that stretch. Seibu have also gone 2-1 during this week's series. The pitching matchup will feature two guys with similar ERAs. Zach Neal (4.75) will get the ball for the Lions, while Ayumu Ishikawa will get the nod for Chiba. Neal carries a 4.75 ERA and 1.09 WHIP over 30.1 innings in his first five starts this season, while Ishikawa has posted a 4.83 ERA and 23:9 K:BB over 31.2 innings in 2020.
Lions' Expected Lineup
Marines' Expected Lineup
Brandon Laird, Marines: Laird has been