Besides winning the division, the teams in each of the two leagues also look to be the best in their league. Prior to the start of the 2018 season, there were some definite MLB Betting favorites to be in that position in the National League, with the Washington Nationals and LA Dodgers very much up there. This season has not played out as we expected, though, and you would have probably won yourself a nice little chunk of change if you had bet that the Atlanta Braves would be the team with the best record in the NL right now.
The Braves are a young team that is starting to click this season, but it is going to be interesting to see if they can maintain their solid play through an entire 162-game season. The Braves will close out their 4-game series with the slight MLB Odds favorite Chicago Cubs on Thursday night and have already done enough to at least guarantee themselves a split.
Chicago at Atlanta MLB Betting Lines & Prediction
.@Delta Recap: Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuña Jr. keyed a three-run 8th inning, and Brandon McCarthy pitched six innings of one-run ball in a win over the Cubs. https://t.co/KenxVG72yz pic.twitter.com/1GYOtf2Nam
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) 17 de mayo de 2018
- When: Thursday, May 17 at 7:35 PM EST
- Where: SunTrust Park, Atlanta
- Starting Pitchers: Jon Lester vs. Michael Soroka
- TV: WGN / FSSE
- Radio: Chicago 670 The Score / Atlanta 1130 AM
- Live Stream: MLB.tv
- MLB Betting Odds: Chicago Cubs -115 (Over/Under at 4.5)
Recent Head to Head (Last 10 Games)
- Runs: Chicago Cubs 5.40 / Atlanta Braves 4.70
- Hits: Chicago Cubs 8.20 / Atlanta Braves 8.90
- Walks: Chicago Cubs 4.50 / Atlanta Braves 4.60
- Strike Outs: Chicago Cubs 8.60 / Atlanta Braves 7.40
Why bet on the Chicago Cubs?
The Chicago Cubs are a tough team to figure out right now, simply because they have yet to put together a truly consistent stretch of good form. Every time it looks as though they are about to turn the corner, they go into another little tailspin. The Cubs went on a 5-game winning run last week, only to follow that up by losing 3 of their next 4 games. It has certainly been a poor showing from a team that was expected to be among the favorites to comes out of the NL this season.
The good news here is that the Central Division is tight, and despite their rollercoaster start to the year, the Cubs are still just 2 games out of the lead. Chicago can score runs, but what they really need is some better efforts from their starting rotation. It will be Jon Lester (3-1, 2.66 ERA) who will get the start for the Cubs.
- Runs: 5.22
- Hits: 8.93
- Walks: 3.55
- Strike Outs: 8.43
- Runs: 3.95
- Hits: 7.57
- Walks: 4.40
- Strike Outs: 8.55
Why bet on the Atlanta Braves?
The Braves can probably count themselves a little unlucky not to be going for the sweep in this series, as they blew a 2-1 lead in the 9th in the second game of this series. They bounced back nicely from that setback to get a 4-1 last night, setting themselves up for a series win if they can take the Thursday game. The Braves were one of the surprise teams to start the season, but we are now at a point where they probably need to be considered a legitimate threat in the National League.
The Braves are 3rd in the league in runs scored, but they are also getting great work from their pitching staff, which ranks in the top 10 in team ERA and quality starts. The Braves have played a lot more games on the road than at home to start the season, so look for them to start feasting on the opposition in home games. Michael Soroka (1-1, 3.68 ERA) will be on the mound for this one.
- Runs: 5.36
- Hits: 9.43
- Walks: 3.64
- Strike Outs: 7.83
- Runs: 3.95
- Hits: 7.93
- Walks: 4.33
- Strike Outs: 9.24
Latest MLB Betting Trends
- Cubs are 2-4 ATS in their last 6 games on the road
- Cubs are 1-5 SU in their last 6 games on the road
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Chi Cubs’s last 6 games on the road
- Braves are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games
- Braves are 4-1 SU in their last 5 games
- The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Atlanta’s last 5 games when playing at home against Chicago
- Lester is 6-2 when starting against Atlanta with an ERA of 2.47 and a WHIP of 1.149
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
The Cubs are not going to want to leave the ATL empty handed, so look for them to take advantage of what looks like a bit of a pitching mismatch here.
Score: Chicago Cubs 5 – Atlanta Braves 4