Chicago Cubs (2-2) at Cincinnati Reds (0-3)
|Date & Time||Monday April 2, 2018, 4:10 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Cincinnati Reds +125 / Chicago Cubs -147 --- Over/Under: 9.5
We have some NL Central action on Monday’s baseball schedule as the Chicago Cubs duke it out with the Cincinnati Reds from Great American Ballpark to kick off a mini 2 game set.
The Chicago Cubs will look to bounce back after splitting their four game opening weekend set with the Marlins, including a 6-0 shutout loss in the series finale on Sunday. Kyle Schwarber led the Cubs with a pair of base hits including a double, while Addison Russell added a two-bagger of his own. Albert Almora Jr., Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Jason Heyward and Tommy La Stella each chipped in a base hit of their own in the losing effort for the Cubbies. Jose Quintana took the loss after giving up all six runs on six hits while walking four and striking out a pair over six innings of work to fall to 0-1 this season. Tyler Chatwood will start game one and was 8-15 with a 4.69 ERA and 120 strikeouts for Colorado last season. In his career, Chatwood is 0-3 with a 5.09 ERA and 13 strikeouts against Cincinnati.
The Cincinnati Reds will still be looking for their first win of the season after opening the season by being swept by the Washington Nationals, including a 6-5 loss in Sunday’s series finale. Phil Gosselin led the Reds with a pair of RBIs on a pinch-hit home run, while Billy Hamilton and Adam Duvall each added a double and an RBI. Scooter Gennett also added a double, while Joey Votto, Devin Mesoraco and Scott Schebler each added a base hit in the losing effort for the Reds. Sal Romano gave up three runs on four hits while walking four and striking out a pair over six innings of work to fall to 0-1 this season. Tyler Mahle will start the series opener and was 1-2 with a 2.70 ERA and 14 strikeouts last season. This will be Mahle’s first career start against the Cubs.
Chicago is 26-5 in their last 31 road games against a right-handed starter and 4-1 in their last 5 division matchups while the under is 14-3-2 in their last 19 games against a team with a winning percentage below .400. Cincinnati is 0-8 in their last 8 home games and 2-12 in their last 14 games overall while the under is 3-0-1 in Mahle’s last 4 starts overall. Chicago is 43-17 in the last 60 meetings between these two teams.
Chicago is probably the better of the two teams here, but the problem I have with the Cubs is that they split a series with Miami that in my opinion, the Cubbies should’ve dominated given the talent disparity in the lineups. Cincinnati’s record doesn’t look great and the trends would favor the Cubs here, but Cincinnati hung around with the Nats in the later stages of the series finale and Chatwood has struggled against the Reds in his career while Mahle looked good in his limited appearances last season, so I’ll take a shot with Cincinnati and the plus money on Monday.