MLB Baseball Betting: Pittsburgh Pirates at Chicago Cubs

MLB Baseball Betting:  Pittsburgh Pirates at Chicago Cubs

Friday baseball action in the afternoon with what might be the most significant game on the board all day. The Pittsburgh Pirates have already clinched a wild card playoff spot and now the Chicago Cubs are trying to do the same thing. The Cubs need a win here or a loss tonight by the San Francisco Giants to lock up the final postseason wild card position in the National League. The Pirates lead Chicago by 3.5 games which is significant as it will afford them home field advantage in the wild card playoff game. In a one game ‘shoot out’ situation like this every possible edge is important–and particularly for the Pirates who have been dominant at PNC Park this season(50-25). The Pirates can’t afford to ‘phone in’ this three game series and keep their playoff position. The Cubs have this series, then an awkward single game on Monday against the Kansas City Royals followed by a three game set at Cincinnati (who looks to have quit on the season).

Excellent pitching matchup as the Pirates send right hander Gerrit Cole (they’ve won 21 of his 30 starts this season) against Cubs’ lefthander Jon Lester. Lester hasn’t been in great form this season but he’s looked sharp lately with a 2.45 ERA in his last three games. The bad news for Lester–he hasn’t received much help from his teammates and the Cubs have managed to lose two of his last three starts despite his solid pitching effort.

Cubs have gotten the better of the Pirates this season winning 10 of 16 head to head including 4 of 6 at Wrigley Field. This game is really a ‘toss up’ based on most of the statistical comparisons so we’ll look for what we can. Worth noting that the Cubs have a small loss in day games this season (-2.9 units) while the Pirates have made a nice profit in this situation (+10.9 units). We’ll take the Pirates at a small underdog price and look for this run of success to continue. The Pirates have not shown any drop off since clinching and we think they’re the value side today. This series should be close but we’ll look for Pittsburgh to take the opening game.