The nation turns its attention to Wrigley Field tonight for ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball in a matchup worthy of the primetime slot. We will break it all down in our Cubs vs. Cardinals betting preview with odds, picks, and predictions in a moment.
However, before we do, a couple of things to know about wagering on this one in the Illinois online sports betting market.
Meanwhile, FanDuel Par-A-Dice Sportsbook, which offers a $1,000 risk-free bet and has a special boost on tonight’s game, is the latest mobile app to join the Illinois market. Those who bet at least $25 on the Cubs or Cardinals will receive a $5 bonus for every run that team scores. Get these offers here.
Cubs vs. Cardinals Betting Preview
Let’s take a look at the Cubs vs. Cardinals betting odds and matchups.
The Cardinals suddenly find themselves right back in the thick of the N.L. Central chase after sweeping Saturday’s doubleheader with the Cubs. Chicago’s lineup continued to its underwhelming performance after combining to produce just three runs and nine hits in two losses.
Jon Lester (2-1, 5.11 ERA) will try to right the ship tonight. He opposes Dakota Hudson (1-2, 2.77 ERA).
Lester is also looking to rebound following an underwhelming performance of his own last time out. He surrendered five earned runs in just 5 1/3 IP to a below average Pirates lineup. In fact, Lester has surrendered at least five earned runs in three of his last four starts. He’s allowed 19 earned runs over 20 IP in that four-game stretch.
Hudson, meanwhile, was outstanding in his last start against the Reds. He allowed just one earned run over seven innings while striking out seven and allowing just four hits.
Cubs vs. Cardinals Odds
Let’s go to the board and take a look at the current Cubs vs. Cardinals odds, courtesy of FanDuel Par-A-Dice Sportsbook located in Illinois:
Sunday, September 6, 6:10 PM CDT
• FanDuel Sportsbook: Cubs (-104)/Cardinals (-110); Over/Under 12
Note: Cubs vs. Cardinals odds are subject to change prior to game time. These odds are as of 12:30 pm CDT.
Analysis: This is an interesting line. Despite losing both games of yesterday’s doubleheader, the first-place Cubs currently find themselves as an underdog again tonight. That’s likely due to the Cardinals’ pitching advantage. While Lester has been reliable for year, Hudson has simply outpitched him this season.
The other problem for the Cubs is that the guys who are typically expected to propel the offense are the ones currently killing it. Javy Báez is hitting .195 with a 54 wRC+. Kris Bryant has a .247 OBP and slugging under .300. Both have been brutal.
Interestingly, tonight will mark only the fourth time this season that the Cardinals face off against a left-handed starting pitcher. It’s worth noting Cardinals hitters have struggled against LHP this season, producing only a .218 average, .652 OPS, and 77 OPS+. All three marks are among league-worsts.
Conversely, the Cubs have produced a .240 average for a stellar .785 OPS, and 111 OPS+ against RHP.
Cubs vs. Cardinals Betting Predictions and Pick
Betting Notes to Know
Here are some notes to consider as you evaluate the Cubs vs. Cardinals odds and make your picks.
- The Cubs are just 11-9 at home this season and are 0-4 as a home underdog.
- When priced between -115 and 1-10, the Cubs are 5-5 this season.
- Chicago is 18-10 at night this season.
- The Cubs are 11-9 in Jon Lester’s starts when favored between -115 and -101 but only 3-4 at the number in his home starts.
- The Cubs are 12-20 in Lester’s starts as an underdog, while just 3-5 in his starts as a home underdog.
- St. Louis is 7-6 on the road this season. Since the start of the 2017 season, the Cardinals are just 12-22 at Wrigley Field, though they are 3-2 there this season.
- The Cardinals are 9-10 against Lester and 4-6 against him at Wrigley.
- The high total doesn’t necessarily indicate an over. Since 2005, in games with a total of 12 played at Wrigley Field, the over is just 9-9-2.
- High run totals also don’t necessarily hit when teams are “due to break out.” In fact, the over is just 11-11 when the home team is coming off a game in which they scored just 1 run. It’s 12-12 when the home team has scored three runs or less in two straight games.
Cubs vs. Cardinals Pick
A tough game with a moneyline that reflects the toss-up nature of it. Jon Lester has been bad for a month, but the Cardinals have struggled against lefties this season. However, if the Cardinals do close as the favorite, I would be willing to roll with the trend of the Cubs’ poor performance as an underdog in Lester’s starts.
As for the total, it’s hard to imagine how a team hitting as poorly as Chicago is right now has a total set at 12-12.5, particularly when the Cardinals don’t hit lefties. For those reasons, I’d lean under, though the high spread certainly raises alarms.
Cubs vs. Cardinals prediction: Cardinals -110