A showdown between two divisional rivals is on tap as the gritty Chicago Cubs prepare for war versus a Milwaukee Brewers squad that is looking to stay relevant in the National League playoff race. Join us for our MLB odds series, where are Cubs-Brewers prediction and pick will be unveiled for all to see.

After coming out on top yesterday in game one of the series by a score of 4-3, the Cubs will be eager to defeat their NL Central foes in back-to-back games. Scheduled to make the Saturday start will be the left-handed veteran Drew Smyly, who is 5-7 with a 3.47 ERA thus far this season.

As for the Brewers, Milwaukee is desperate for some wins before the wheels officially fall off. Entering this one in the midst of a three-game losing streak, the Brewers have all of a sudden are looking up at the Cardinals in the division as they sit in second place and trail St. Louis by six games. Regardless, the Brewers are still in the thick of a playoff race as they will send out righty Brandon Woodruff to stop the bleeding. Woodruff has won ten starts in a row with a 9-3 record and possesses a 3.51 ERA in 2022.

Here are the Cubs-Brewers MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel. 

MLB Odds: Cubs-Brewers Odds

Chicago Cubs: +1.5 (-130)

Milwaukee Brewers: -1.5 (+108)

Over: 8 (-104)

Under: 8 (-118)

Why The Cubs Could Cover The Spread

While the Cubbies may not be playing for anything special at this point of the season with a 55-71 overall record, Chicago is not about to lay down with a month to go in the regular season. In fact, the Cubs have reeled off eight wins in their previous twelve and are now sitting in third place in the division. Even with playoff play serving as an afterthought, there are many positive takeaways for Cubs fans heading into this Saturday showdown with the Brewers.

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First off, Chicago must be able to produce effective and patient at-bats when facing off with an elite pitcher like Brandon Woodruff. As a whole, the Cubs have been fairly below average at the plate this season with a collective .240 batting average, but they have shown at least proven that they aren’t willing to shrivel up when their backs are up against the wall.

One difference maker on Saturday that could help to cover the spread is outfielder Ian Happ, who clubbed a pair of home runs in the Cubs win on Friday.

Conversely, the arms of Drew Smyly and the bullpen will need to show up in a big way as they can’t afford to get in a shootout with this Brewers squad. In his career versus Milwaukee, Smyly is 1-0 with a 1.00 ERA in his two career starts against the Brewers. He is also 2-1 with a minuscule 1.13 earned-run average in August.

Why The Brewers Could Cover The Spread

With a little over a month left until postseason play, the panic button has officially been pressed in Milwaukee. For a majority of the season, the Brewers looked like a true contender by leading the division race for several months. However, a combination of poor play from all aspects has pushed the Brewers to the brink of being on the outside looking in at the playoff picture. Yes, the Brewers still stand at 65-59, but this is a far cry from where they stood only a few short weeks ago.

Regardless, this Brewers team is still capable of wreaking havoc. For starters, Milwaukee’s best attribute comes from their ability to hit for extra bases and home runs. The leader in the long ball category has been the powerful Rowdy Tellez, who has hit the most home runs on the club with 27 and has also demonstrated his clutch play by driving in 75 men. With Tellez homering in yesterday’s affair, be on the lookout for the slugging lefty to leave his mark on Saturday.

Lastly, in order to cover the spread, the Brewers’ best bet may come from starter Brandon Woodruff. Arguably one of the better twirlers since coming back from the injured list with an ankle injury, Woodruff hasn’t lost a start in nearly two months. This is excellent news for Milwaukee, as the Brewers cannot afford to lose a second straight game to a lowly Cubs team in pursuit of at least a Wild Card Berth.

Final Cubs-Brewers Prediction & Pick

Despite the Brewers’ struggles of late, expect them to come out strong in large part due to Woodruff’s dominance. Hammer the Brewers spread and you will not be disappointed.

Final Cubs-Brewers Prediction & Pick: Brewers -1.5 (+108)