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Cincinnati Reds at Chicago Cubs
MLB: Friday, September 14th, 2018, Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois, 8:05 PM ET
The Cincinnati Reds were in a poor form of four consecutive defeats but they bounced back with four wins in the next six games; however, the Los Angeles Dodgers handed them a heavy loss on Wednesday. On the other hand, the Chicago Cubs lost three in a row before they beat Milwaukee and Washington to preserve the top spot in the NL Central and the NL conference.
The pitching matchup for Friday’s tilt will give us Matt Harvey for the Cincinnati Reds against the Chicago Cubs’ Cole Hamels. First pitch was set for 8:05 PM ET.
The Reds’ offense let them down in a defeat to the Dodgers
Cincinnati won the opening two games of the series with the favored Los Angeles Dodgers at home, but the visitors responded in the final clash with an 8-1 victory. The Reds offense couldn’t get the things going since the first inning when they scored their only run, and that was a bit surprising considering Cincy’s offensive displays of late. The Reds are averaging 4.54 runs per contest which are not bad at all, but their defense is the worst in the National League as they are allowing 5.17 runs per game. That’s the open invitation for the second-best offense in the NL to cause them plenty of problems on this one.
Matt Harvey is set to start against the Chicago Cubs, and he’s coming from a 5-7 record in 2017, a 6.70 ERA, a 1.69 WHIP, 47 walks, and 67 strikeouts in 19 games in total. Harvey started 25 games in this season and has seven wins and eight losses as he pitched 138 innings, allowing 148 hits and 77 runs with 34 walks and 114 strikeouts.
The Cubs snatched a tight win over the Nats
Chicago lost in the final game of the series with the Milwaukee Brewers before they met the Washington Nationals in a one-game mini-series and beat them, 3-2 in the extra inning. The Cubs displayed a sturdy defense to limit the Nationals to three runs and snap their five-game winning streak with a 4-3 victory thanks to a score in the tenth inning. Chicago is conceding four runs per game on average but they allowed more than four in only one out of the previous four games, so the visitors will find it hard to get to the positive result here.
Cole Hamels is set to start against the Cincinnati Reds, and he’s coming from an 11-6 record in 2017, a 4.20 ERA, a 1.20 WHIP, 53 walks, and 105 strikeouts in 24 games overall. Hamels started 28 games in this campaign and has nine wins and nine losses as he pitched 165 innings, allowing 151 hits and 79 runs with 59 walks and 162 strikeouts.
- 4-1 in their last five games played on Friday
- 8-3 in their last 11 vs. an opponent with a losing record
- 7-2 in their last nine when their opponent allows five runs or more in their previous game
- 25-51 in their last 76 vs. National League Central rivals
- 4-10 in their last 14 during game one of a series
- 3-8 in their last 11 games vs. a starter with a WHIP less than 1.15
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Chicago won eight out of the previous 13 H2H encounters including the last six, while the Cubs were victorious in the past six meetings at the Wrigley Field. Cincinnati’s offense wasn’t bad at all recently if we exclude the previous clash with the Dodgers, but the Cubs have the 4th best defense in the National League and will be looking to stop the visitors from scoring more than four runs which will probably lead to the victory.
Prediction: Chicago Cubs (-210)
Full-Game Total Pick
For those who prefer playing on the points, over is 42-18-3 in the last 63 meetings; over is 4-0 in Cubs previous four vs. a team with a losing record, over is 5-1 in Reds last six after scoring two runs or less in their previous game, while over is 5-2 in Harvey’s previous seven starts vs. National League Central opponents.
Prediction: Over 8.5 (-105)
Full-Game Prop Bet
Cincinnati conceded more than four runs in five out of the last seven games, and although the Cubs’ offense is far from being impressive lately, I am backing the hosts to score at least five on this one.
Prediction: Team Totals: Chicago Cubs Over 4.5 (-120)
First Five Innings Side Pick
The Cubs were up after the first five innings in just one out of their last five games, while Cincinnati is way better in that segment lately. Still, I believe the Cubs will not gamble on this one as they cannot drop a win, so I am backing them to take the control of the game as early as possible.
Prediction: Chicago Cubs (-220)
First Five Innings Total Bet
Only one of Chicago’s previous five games produced more than four runs in the first five innings, and even though I expect to see at least nine at the end of this clash, I don’t think the teams will combine for 5+ in the opening five innings.
Prediction: Under 4.5 (-130)
First Five Innings Prop Prediction
Just two of the Cubs’ last five games produced a score in the first inning, while that’s the same case with Cincinnati’s previous five, so I don’t think we will see a run in the first inning here.
Prediction: Only one of Chicago’s previous five games produced more than four runs in the first five innings, and even though I expect to see at least nine in the end of this clash, I don’t think the teams will combine for 5+ in the opening five innings.