MLB odds: Brewers vs. Cubs prediction, odds, pick, and more – 8/9/2021
The Brewers have dominated the NL Central for most of this season. They currently lead the division by five games, with that lead being as large as 10 games. Chicago actually got off to a strong start and held a division lead early in the season, only to fall apart and execute a fire sale right before the trade deadline. The Cubs are currently sitting in fourth place in the division, 14.5 games back of Milwaukee.
Here’s how the bookmakers have set the lines for Monday night’s matchup.
MLB Odds: Brewers-Cubs Odds
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Milwaukee Brewers -1 1/2 (-130)
Chicago Cubs +1 1/2 (+110)
Over 9 runs (-103)
Under 9 runs (-117)
Why The Brewers Could Cover The Spread
The Brewers have become the division leader by leaning on their pitching staff, something they will do again in this series opener. Milwaukee will entrust the start to pitcher Freddy Peralta.
Peralta has been nothing short of elite this season. He has posted a 2.21 ERA and a 0.89 WHIP, both Cy Young-level numbers. Peralta’s advanced stats are also insane, as he has put up a 34.5% strikeout percentage while only allowing a 5.5% barrel percentage to opposing hitters. It’s unlikely that a Cubs lineup that has almost every hitter striking out and whiffing at a high rate will be able to string together hits against Peralta. To make matters even worse for the Cubs, they struggle against right-handed pitching. Chicago holds a team batting average of .243 against lefties, but that falls all the way to .221 against righties.
The Brewers will face Chicago starter Alec Mills on Monday. Mills hasn’t been great or terrible this season, but the Milwaukee lineup has some advantages over the righty. Five of the Brewers’ hitters own a career batting average of .250 or above against Mills, showing that they are more than capable of hitting him. Mills also struggles to make hitters miss, earning a whiff rate of 17.1%. That won’t help against a lineup that only has three players whiffing at an above-average rate.
Why The Cubs Could Cover The Spread
Chicago may not have a lot going for them in the batter’s box, but the Brewers aren’t that much better in that category. Milwaukee ranks in the bottom 10 in MLB in batting average, OPS, and slugging percentage. This lineup shouldn’t be too tough for Mills to handle, especially when taking into account the pitcher’s recent hot streak.
Mills’ stats over his last seven games are significantly better than his season-long numbers. Over that span, he has earned himself an ERA of 3.72 and a WHIP of 1.40. Mills is also a much more effective pitcher at home, posting a 3.27 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP over his starts at Wrigley Field. None of those are elite stats, but they indicate a level of play that should be good enough to deal with a struggling Brewers offense.
Another factor helping Mills is the fact that Milwaukee struggles to hit right-handed pitching. Much like the Cubs, the Brewers see a drop in their batting average, OBP, OPS, and slugging percentages whenever they face a righty as opposed to a lefty.
Final Brewers-Cubs Prediction & Pick
The Brewers are a decent pick here, but they aren’t the best on the board. The under should hit easily in this matchup. Milwaukee is deploying one of the best pitchers in baseball against one of the worst lineups in baseball, so it’s fair to expect next to nothing offensively from the Cubs. Mills has pitched well recently and the Brewers aren’t exactly an offensive juggernaut, so Milwaukee shouldn’t be scoring all that much either.
FINAL PICK: Under 9 runs (-103)