It’s not a good time to travel via plane in this country right now due to the coronavirus and the Milwaukee Brewers won’t have to when they open a series at the rival and southern neighbor Chicago Cubs on Thursday. The cites are only around 90 miles apart. The Cubs are favored on the MLB odds.
How to Bet Brewers at Cubs MLB Odds & TV Info
- When: Thursday, 7:15 PM ET
- Where: Wrigley Field
- Probable pitchers (away/home): Brett Anderson/Yu Darvish
- TV: Fox, MLB Extra Innings
- Stream/gameday audio: Fox Sports Go, https://www.mlb.com/live-stream-games/
- Opening MLB Lines: Cubs -165, Brewers +152 (total TBA)
These clubs opened the season against one another at Wrigley and the Cubbies took the series 2-1 thanks to a 9-1 rout in the finale on July 26. Cubs catcher Willson Contreras smacked an RBI double in the Cubs’ four-run fourth and a long solo homer in the seventh. Ian Happ added a two-run drive in the eighth and Anthony Rizzo belted a solo shot one out later. Leading 1-0, the Cubs sent 10 batters to the plate in the fourth. The first six reached safely, starting with Kyle Schwarber’s walk and Contreras’ double.Why Bet on Milwaukee?
Could a reliever win the Cy Young in this shortened season? Could be, and perhaps it’s Brewers closer Josh Hader. In Tuesday’s win over Minnesota, he struck out all three batters in a scoreless ninth inning to record his third save of the season. Hader was summoned to protect a two-run lead and managed to work around a two-out walk by Nelson Cruz to fire a flawless ninth inning. He needed only 19 pitches to strike out the side. Hader has allowed only two baserunners – no hits — over four scoreless innings with six strikeouts to open the 2020 campaign.
Tuesday also saw the return to action of outfielder/1B/DH Ryan Braun as he was activated from the injury list. Braun required a minor surgical procedure for an infection in his right index finger earlier this month. Braun was 0-for-4 but has killed the Cubs in his career. Milwaukee sent infielder Mark Mathias to their alternate training site to make room. Mathias went 5-for-16 with two RBI and a stolen base during his call-up.
Don’t expect any early fireworks from Milwaukee as it has scored just two first-innings runs all season (entering Wednesday) and just two in the second inning.
It’s lefty Brett Anderson (0-1, 5.40) on the mound. He didn’t pitch in the first series as he missed the first 11 days of the regular season because of a blister. Anderson struggled in last Saturday’s loss to the Reds, giving up three runs (two earned) on four hits over 3 2/3 innings.
He walked two and struck out two on the night — throwing 39 of his 68 pitches for strikes. Cincinnati cashed in on a Keston Hiura fielding error in the first inning with a Eugenio Suarez three-run homer. Anderson was able to keep the ball on the ground otherwise, inducing eight groundballs before giving way to Corbin Burnes. Anderson continues to build up his stamina after getting a late start to the year. He should be able to throw around 80 pitches Thursday.Why Bet on Chicago?
In Tuesday’s win at Cleveland, Cubs manager David Ross moved outfielder Ian Happ from ninth in the order to sixth and it paid off as Happ was 2-for-3 with a walk and an RBI. Happ has mostly hit ninth this year, even though he’s been tearing it up since Opening Day and for the final couple of months of last season. Happ’s 1.313 OPS since September 21 of last season leads all big-league switch hitters (min. 50 PA).
In just his fourth major league season, Happ’s 53 home runs are already second-most in franchise history among switch-hitters, surpassed only by Augie Galan’s 59 homers from 1934-41. Happ has averaged one homer every 17.57 at-bats, by far the best mark for any Cubs switch-hitter with at least 900 career at-bats (Ripper Collins is second, averaging one homer every 32.62 at-bats spanning the 1937-38 campaigns).
Besides Ross, just three others have started their Cubs managerial career with at least 11 wins in their first 14 games: Albert Spalding (11-3 in 1876), Cap Anson (13-1 in 1879) and Rogers Hornsby (11-3 in 1930-31).
It’s Yu Darvish (2-1, 2.12) on the bump for Chicago. He did pitch vs. Milwaukee in the first series and allowed three runs on six hits over four innings. Darvish wasn’t sharp from the outset, allowing a pair of singles in a laborious first inning and giving up runs in the second and fourth innings. He didn’t serve up a homer and four of his six hits allowed were singles.
Last Wednesday, Darvish limited the Royals to one run over seven innings in a victory Wednesday. He was successful despite striking out just four, his low total in 19 starts since last June 10. Darvish was shaky in his summer-camp exhibition and in his season debut against the Brewers, but getting to face the Pirates and Royals lineups in his last two starts has allowed him to settle in nicely.
He does not have a big strikeout game yet this season, but Darvish has issued only two walks in 17 innings, which is a very encouraging sign. The right-hander tightened up his control down the stretch last year and was one of the best pitchers in the game after an ugly first half of 2019.
Darvish owns a 2.32 career ERA against Milwaukee in six starts, good for lowest in his career against an NL Central opponent.Game Trends
- Brewers are 4-1 in their last 5 road games.
- Brewers are 7-2 in their last 9 games as a road underdog.
- Brewers are 3-8 in the last 11 meetings in Chicago.
- Cubs are 6-0 in their last 6 home games.
- Cubs are 8-1 in their last 9 games as a favorite.