Vegas Odds & MLB Predictions: Cincinnati Reds at Chicago Cubs (July 7th, 2018)
Chicago Looks to Bounce Back After Dropping Opener to Cincinnati
The Cubs came into the game fresh off of consecutive sweeps over the Twins and Tigers along with a win in their finale with the Dodgers last week. They had scored 56 runs in those six games. But like all things in life, what comes up, must come down.
On Friday they were held to just eight hits and two runs by Tyler Mahle -who pitched six and 2/3 innings- and a collection of relievers.
The Reds got out to a 3-0 lead and essentially held on from there as the Cubs put up single runs in a the fifth and eighth to make a game out of it.
The Reds were one of the worst teams in all of baseball through the first two-plus months of the season. Their record stood at 22-43, 21 games under .500 as of June 9th and seemed set to join the ranks of the Orioles, White Sox and Marlins as the tanking teams of the season.
But clearly they have flipped a switch since then, posting a 16-6 record. What’s more this is now the fifth time they’ve played the Cubs since the streak started and they’ve won each of those games.
They also took two of three from the Braves and split a four-game series with the Brewers in the past 11 days. Those are great results against the teams with the three best records in the league.
Tyler Chatwood (3-5, 4.54 ERA) was hit hard in his last start, allowing seven runs in five innings in a 14-9 win over the Twins. It was part of a month of June that saw him post a 4.54 ERA, allowing two runs or less three times and four runs or more twice. The Cubs are 3-2 in his last five and 5-5 in his last ten.
Matt Harvey (4-5, 4.91 ERA) has pitched four strong starts in a row and that’s helped him lower his ERA from 5.97 to the current 4.91. He’s allowed a total of six runs in 22.2 innings over that span. The Reds have won his last three and are 6-4 since he came over from the Mets.
The Cubs are -154 favorites and the Reds +144 underdogs. Matt Harvey might be pitching well now, but this will be a great test against a top offensive team. I like the Cubs chances here. The Pick: Cubs 7-4.