The Cardinals will be looking to avoid the sweep against their division rival in the series finale. St. Louis has been struggling of late and the Cubs have been red-hot over the past week. This Sunday Night Baseball matchup on ESPN will certainly feature some fireworks and solid NL Central baseball.
Here’s how sportsbooks have set the Cardinals-Cubs odds.
MLB Odds: Cardinals-Cubs Odds
St. Louis Cardinals +1.5 (-166)
Chicago Cubs -1.5 (+146)
Over 9.5 Runs (-105)
Under 9.5 Runs (-115)
Why The Cardinals Could Cover The Spread
The Cardinals haven’t been themselves lately as they’ve lost their past three series and are now looking to avoid a sweep against the Cubs. The Cardinals have lost eight of their last nine games and are slipping in a tough division. For a lineup that possesses some lethal bats, the St. Louis offense has been really struggling. The Cardinals are hitting .231 as a club, which is 22nd in the majors. With a guy like Nolan Arenado still doing his thing, it’s a lack of depth in the lineup that has dragged them down this far.
The Cardinals will turn to hard throwing right-hander Carlos Martinez in the series finale. Martinez possesses some filthy stuff but has really struggled, surrendering 18 earned runs in his last three starts. The right-hander is currently 3-6 with a 6.21 ERA and 38 strikeouts through his first 11 starts of the season. St. Louis will need the struggling right-hander to play the role of stopper in a critical finale in Chicago.
Why The Cubs Could Cover The Spread
The Cubs have been on an absolute tear of late with wins in five of their last six games to date. The Cubs are now tied with the Brewers for first place in the National League Central through the first two months of the season. Chicago began this recent run with a tremendous month of May, which has carried over into the first few weeks of June. The bats have really come alive as the Cubs have now hit 88 home runs this season. That is the fifth-best mark in the league, and guys like Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, and Anthony Rizzo are returning to form in a big way.
Chicago will hand the ball to right-hander Zach Davies as they look to complete the sweep. Davies has been hot of late with a 2.16 ERA over his last eight starts. He is currently 3-3 with a 4.45 ERA and 37 strikeouts through his first 14 starts of the season. Davies logged six shutout innings in a victorious effort against the Padres in his last start, allowing just one hit. Although the strikeout numbers have been low, Davies has been extremely effective dating back to May.
Final Cardinals-Cubs Prediction & Pick
I’m predicting this will be a rather low-scoring affair on Sunday Night Baseball. The Cubs have been scorching and Carlos Martinez has been struggling, but I could see things slowing down under the spotlight. St. Louis hasn’t been able to get much going at the plate, while Zach Davies has been extremely efficient lately. Martinez is due for a bounce-back start at some point, and I think he will get it here in an important divisional matchup.
FINAL PICK: Under 9.5 Runs (-115)