MLB Betting Prediction on NL Central for Remainder of the 2017 Season

Posted by Jordan Walterss on Tuesday,June 27, 2017 10:35, EDT in

The Chicago Cubs won the NL Central Division last year by a mile with 103 victories on the way to ending their 108-year World Series drought. As of now, Chicago remains the MLB betting favorite to win the NL Central even though the Brewers are leading the division.

Everyone expected the Cubs to repeat this year, and maybe they will. But the Cubbies have vastly underachieved, meaning that if they don’t win the division they likely won’t be in the playoffs.

MLB Betting Prediction on NL Central for Remainder of the 2017 Season

Cubs Not Hitting When It Matters

For starters, Sunday’s loss to Miami largely showed what one of the Cubs’ biggest problems has been: hitting with runners in scoring position. They left 11 men on base after earning 8 hits and 7 walks. Plus, Anthony Rizzo and reigning NL MVP Kris Bryant combined to leave 7 on as Rizzo came up twice with the bases loaded and only managed a sac fly.

The Cubs are one game above .500 through 75 games at 38-37, an 11-game offset from their rarely-seen 49-26 start through 75 games a season ago. The 2015 Cubs were 40-35, only two games off from this year, through 75 games en route to their 97-win campaigns.

How Does This Compare to Last Season?

Last season, the Cubs posted 51 quality starts through their first 75 games with a 2.56 ERA from their starting pitchers overall. This year, the Cubs have 32 quality starts through 75 games with a 4.33 ERA from their starting pitchers.

At the plate, the Cubs have a collective .327 on-base percentage and .421 slugging percentage, good for a .748 team OPS. Through 74 games last year, the Cubs had a collective .349 on-base percentage and a .433 slugging percentage, good for a .782 team OPS.

Brewers Continue To Surprise

In all honesty, I don’t think Milwaukee has what it takes to hang on atop the division, but the Brewers did make a good move over the weekend in signing catcher Stephen Vogt. Vogt, 32, was designated for assignment by the A’s in the midst of a poor season, offensively and defensively.

But he was an American League all-star the previous two seasons and the Brewers’ brain trust thought he would be a good fit on the club and provide veteran catching depth. He is known for being a strong clubhouse presence and leader, which also factored into the move.

A Quick Look Back at Vogt’s Career

As has been mentioned, Vogt was an AL all-star in 2015 and 2016 but his productivity waned considerably this season, both with the bat and behind the plate. He was batting .217 with a .287 OBP, four home runs and 20 RBIs when the A’s designated him for assignment.  It’s a good low-risk, high-reward move.

Also, what has gotten into Eric Sogard this year? He is batting .360 (41-for- 114) with a .471 on- base pct. this season. He leads the majors in OBP and ranks second in batting average (min. 100 PA).

Cardinals Can’t Get It Going

The only realistic competitor to the Cubs in the division is St. Louis. But if the Cards don’t start playing better, Mike Matheny could be the first manager fired. For a franchise that has had nine consecutive winning seasons and just one losing season in the past 17, this season isn’t going over well.

Firing Matheny is a hot topic on Cardinals Twitter — and not just this season. He has long been criticized for his strategic moves and bullpen usage. The last time GM John Mozeliak engineered a shakeup in the clubhouse, when he changed the roles of three coaches on June 9, the Cardinals responded with a three-game sweep of the Phillies.

“We’re not on a great path right now,” Mozeliak said. “I can’t sit here and tell you we’ve got this figured out. We should be winning and we’re not.”

Will the Cards be sellers or buyers ahead of the deadline?

“We have to have everything on the table,” Mozeliak said. “We can’t simply say we’re going to buy. We simply can’t say we’re going to sell. I think we have to see how things play out. From my standpoint, the organization has to remain open-minded. This team has a chance to do good things, but we have to get it going. Urgency has to be on the forefront of our thinking. There is no clock in baseball, but time is moving.”

The Cardinals are not looking good in the MLB betting odds to win the NL Central.

Latest MLB Betting Trends

Chicago Cubs

  • 6-3 SU in the last 9 games
  • The total went UNDER in 9 of the Cubs’s last 10 games
  •  4-2 ATS in the last 6 games on the road
  • 4-2 SU in the last 6 games on the road

Milwaukee Brewers

  •  2-8 ATS in the last 10 games
  • The total went UNDER in 4 of Milwaukee’s last 5 games
  • 4-2 SU in the last 6 games on the road

St. Louis Cardinals

  • 2-4 ATS in the last 6 games
  • The total went OVER in 9 of St. Louis’s last 12 games
  • 1-4 ATS in the last 5 games on the road
  • 3-11 SU in the last 14 games on the road

Upcoming MLB Betting Schedule

Chicago Cubs

  • June 27th, 2017 @ Washington Nationals. 7:05pm ET
  • June 28th, 2017 @ Washington Nationals. 7:05pm ET
  • June 29th, 2017 @ Washington Nationals. 4:05pm ET
  • June 30th, 2017 @ Cincinnati Reds. 7:10pm ET
  • July 1st, 2017 @ Cincinnati Reds. 4:10pm ET

Milwaukee Brewers

  • June 27th, 2017 @ Cincinnati Reds. 7:10pm ET
  • June 28th, 2017 @ Cincinnati Reds. 7:10pm ET
  • June 29th, 2017 @ Cincinnati Reds. 7:10pm ET
  • June 30th, 2017 vs Miami Marlins. 8:00pm ET
  • July 1st, 2017 vs Miami Marlins. 4:10pm ET

St. Louis Cardinals

  • June 27th, 2017 @ Arizona Diamonbacks. 9:40pm ET
  • June 28th, 2017 @ Arizona Diamonbacks. 9:40pm ET
  • June 29th, 2017 @ Arizona Diamonbacks. 9:40pm ET
  • June 30th, 2017 vs Washington Nationals. 8:15pm ET
  • July 1st, 2017 vs Washington Nationals. 8:15pm ET

Final MLB Betting Predictions

In summary, there’s still quite a long way to go for the regular season to end. But with the All-Star Break coming up very soon, we can have a better idea of how the team in the NL Central are standing and their chances to ending the season on a high. With that in mind, I think Cubs will win the division but won’t start to pull away until September.