Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates - 8/31/16 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Pittsburgh Pirates (67-62) at Chicago Cubs (83-47)
MLB Baseball: Wednesday, August 31, 2016 at 8:05 pm (Wrigley Field)
R Vogelsong (3-3) (3.02) vs. Mike Montgomery (4-5) (2.60)
The Line: Chicago Cubs -182 / Pittsburgh Pirates +172 --- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
The Chicago Cubs look to continue their dominance over the Pittsburgh Pirates when the two sides meet up again on Wednesday night.
The Pirates need a big win on the road on Wednesday as they take on the league leading Cubs at Wrigley and while there is still a handful of games left to be played this season the Pirates are running out of time and need some statement wins if they’re going to make a playoff push. The Bucs will send veteran Ryan Vogelsong to the mound here as he will face off against Mike Montgomery who will come out of the bullpen to make a spot start here in a matchup that on paper at least looks like a game the Pirates may be able to win. Pittsburgh is still a very good team and is coming off a disappointing loss in the postseason a year ago so clearly the motivation is there, but they are still having to play catch up here and against one of the best teams in baseball it isn’t easy to make up ground.
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The Cubs meanwhile continue to plow through the competition in the National League and got a masterful outing from Kyle Hendricks last night as he has lowered his ERA to a shade over two and leads the league in that category. Chicago will need a strong effort here from Montgomery if he is going to get the Cubs another win as they are facing a very desperate group that is coming off a very tough loss and while Montgomery has shown he can be a starter before I think it will be a bit of an adjustment here. Montgomery is 4-5 with a 2.60 ERA this season while Vogelsong is 3-3 with a 3.02 mark and has looked great since coming off the DL so this one is shaping up to be a nice pitching battle.
Pittsburgh is 10-1 in their last 11 games against a lefty, 4-1 in their last five against the NL Central, and 4-1 in their last five overall while the Cubs are 6-0 in their last six Wednesday games, 21-6 in their last 27 overall, and 46-17 in their last 63 against the NL Central. The price on the Pirates here is too much to pass on as they are in pursuit of a wild card spot and have been mashing lefties of late.