New York Mets vs. Chicago Cubs

New York Mets vs. Chicago Cubs | 2021 MLB Expert Analysis

Written by on April 20, 2021

ESPN has one national TV game around Major League Baseball on Tuesday and it’s a big-market matchup between the New York Mets and Chicago Cubs from Wrigley Field. The Mets opened as short favorites on the MLB odds.

How to Bet Mets at Cubs MLB Odds & TV Info

Season Series

First meeting since 2019.

Why Bet on NY Mets? | 2021 MLB Expert Analysis 

The Mets lead the NL East at 7-4 and won two of three in Colorado over the weekend, taking the finale 2-1 on Sunday. Michael Conforto went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored. It was Conforto’s second multi-hit game in as many days after going through a six-game hitless streak. Conforto is still searching for his first home run of the season and has only two extra-base hits this season.

Edwin Diaz allowed one hit in a scoreless ninth inning to record his second save of the season Sunday. Diaz was called upon to protect a one-run lead after Marcus Stroman went eight strong innings. Diaz got Raimel Tapia to line out to start the inning followed by a fly-out by Ryan McMahon. Trevor Story would single before he was gunned down by James McCann trying to steal second base to end the game.

Brandon Nimmo had a hit and has reached base in 24 straight games dating back to September 11 last season. He is batting .404 with 12 runs, five doubles, a triple, two home runs, 10 RBI, 15 walks, a .505 OBP and a 1.073 OPS in that span. It is the second-longest active streak in the majors, behind only Mike Trout’s 33-game streak. It is the third-longest streak in Nimmo’s career. The Mets are second in the majors and in the NL with a .347 OBP this season. Nimmo leads the majors with a .543 on-base percentage and .447 batting average.

It’s right-hander Taijuan Walker (0-0, 2.61) here. Walker held the Phillies to one run, earned, on three hits with three walks and eight strikeouts in a 4-3, walk-off win on April 13 at Citi Field. The Mets have won each of Walker’s first two starts via a walkoff. Three of Walker’s last six starts have resulted in his team coming away with a one-run victory.

Walker hasn’t faced the Cubs since August 11, 2017, when he was with Arizona and tossed 5.0 innings and allowed five runs, four earned, on five hits with three walks and two strikeouts in an 8-3 loss at Chase Field.

Why Bet on Chicago Cubs? | 2021 MLB Expert Analysis 

The Cubs have disappointed as they are 6-9 and last in the NL Central. They were embarrassed at home on Sunday night by Atlanta, 13-4, as Kyle Hendricks allowed four homers in the first inning. Anthony Rizzo hit two solo homers for Chicago, which lost for the sixth time in eight games.

It was Rizzo’s first multihomer game since Aug. 29 at Cincinnati and No. 19 for his career. Rizzo finished the night 2-for-4 and is now hitting .250/.344/.500 with three long balls and four RBI on the season. Javier Baez went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI in Sunday’s loss but is still batting only .214.

Closer Craig Kimbrel worked around two walks to pitch a scoreless inning. Kimbrel hadn’t pitched in five days, so the Cubs brought him in for the ninth inning despite the nine-run deficit. The veteran reliever was able to keep Atlanta off the board in the low-leverage appearance, running his scoreless inning streak to seven to start the season. Chicago’s bullpen has limited the opponent to a .191 average, the second‐best mark by any N.L. bullpen (Washington, .186).

It’s former NL Cy Young winner Jake Arrieta (2-1, 3.18) on the mound for the Cubs. He suffered his first loss of the season on April 14 at Milwaukee, allowing three runs on four hits with a walk and five strikeouts in 5.0 innings. Arrieta feasted on the Pirates in amassing a 2.25 ERA in his first two starts.

Arrieta has made 16 career starts against the Mets (six as a member of the Cubs), going 6‐5 with a 3.09 ERA (35 ER/102.0 IP) with 21 walks compared to 88 strikeouts. He is 2‐1 with a 1.80 ERA (8 ER/40.0 IP) in six career starts vs. the Mets as in Cub, including 1‐0 with a 1.37 ERA (3 ER/19.2 IP) in three starts at Wrigley Field. Arrieta won two consecutive starts against the Mets (Sept. 4 and Sept. 15, 2020), going a combined 2‐0 with a 2.19 ERA (3 ER/12.1 IP) while with the Phillies.

Expert Prediction

  • Cubs 4, Mets 3

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