Cubs vs Cardinals

Cubs vs Cardinals: Lines MLB | Best rivalries in Major League Baseball

One of the best rivalries in Major League Baseball is renewed Monday night in an ESPN nationally televised game as the Chicago Cubs visit the St. Louis Cardinals, who are short favorites on the MLB odds.

How to Bet Cubs at Cardinals MLB Odds & TV Info

  • When: Monday, 8 PM ET
  • Where: Busch Stadium
  • Probable pitchers (away/home): Alec Mills/Jake Woodford
  • TV: ESPN
  • Stream/gameday audio: ESPN app
  • Opening MLB Lines: Cardinals -110, Cubs +100 (total 9)

Why Bet on Chicago?

Will closer Craig Kimbrel still be a member of the Cubs on Monday? Trade rumors surrounding him are hot and heavy and it’s all but a lock that he’s dealt by the July 30 deadline. Kimbrel has been fantastic this year with 21 saves, a 0.53 ERA and 0.65 WHIP over 33 2/3 innings with 58 strikeouts. He is generating a 35.8 percent O-Swing rate (swings generated out of the zone) and 18.9 percent swinging-strike rate, which is 7.5 points better than league average.

Catcher Willson Contreras got Sunday off but should be in there for this one. A 3-for-4 effort with a home run and two RBI on Saturday raised Contreras’ average to .306 since the start of July. He’s also drawn seven walks in that 10-game span. Contreras leads N.L. catchers, and is tied for fourth among all catchers, with 14 home runs this season. He leads the majors with 76 starts at catcher and his 641.2 innings behind the dish are tied for the most with Boston’s Christian Vazquez. Dating to the start of the 2018 season, Contreras’ 2,887.1 innings caught are second-most in the majors behind only J.T. Realmuto (2909.2).

It’s Alec Mills on the mound here. Mills (4-2) allowed three earned runs on five hits and one walk while striking out five across 5.2 innings to earn the win against the Phillies in his most recent outing. Mills was handed a five-run lead within the first two innings. His big blemish was a two-run home run hit by Andrew McCutchen.

It was Mills’ fifth consecutive start, and he should have a chance to stick in the rotation given Jake Arrieta’s (hamstring) stint on the injured list. Mills has also pitched effectively as a member of the rotation, maintaining a 3.77 ERA with 25 strikeouts across 28.2 innings.

Mills will make his sixth career appearance (fourth start) against St. Louis. He is 0-1 with a 4.67 ERA (9 ER/17.1 IP) lifetime, including 0-0 with a 1.29 ERA (1 ER/7.0 IP) in two appearances one start) at Busch Stadium. He allowed six runs in 3.2 innings in his last outing vs. the Cardinals on August 19, 2020. Mills allowed two runs or less in his first four outings vs. St. Louis, pitching to a 1.98 ERA (3 ER/13.2 IP) in those appearances.

Why Bet on St. Louis?

Shortstop Paul DeJong is on a bit of a roll right now. He went 1-for-3 with a home run against the Giants on Sunday.

DeJong continued his hot stretch at the plate with a home run in a 2-1 win against the Giants on Sunday. He drove in the first run of the game with a solo blast off of Johnny Cueto to lead off the third inning. DeJong is 10-for-18 over his last six games with three home runs. On the year, DeJong is slashing .205/.299/.409 with 13 homers and 29 RBI over 244 plate appearances.

Closer Alex Reyes walked two batters in a scoreless ninth inning to earn the save against the Giants on Sunday. The 26-year-old right-hander has a 1.45 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, and 55 strikeouts over 43 1/3 innings while going a perfect 22-for-22 in save chances.

Yadier Molina is one double from reaching 396 in his career and tying Hall of Famer Gabby Hartnett (1922-41) for 5th all-time among primary catchers in MLB history. Molina is eight hits shy of tying Albert Pujols (2,073) for 4th all-time in Cardinals history.

It’s Jake Woodford on the mound. Woodford was sent down to Memphis on June 28 to stretch out to come back as a starter. In three starts at Triple-A, he threw 12 innings with a 4.50 ERA, eight strikeouts and six walks.

“He wouldn’t be starting if we didn’t think he was built up,” Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said. “Woody’s ready to go. He’s got a full complement; he’s ready to get up to 100.”

Woodford has only faced the Cubs at Wrigley Field in his career, making three relief appearances including two in 2021 (0-0, 7.71 ERA). He is 1-1 with a 7.85 in 13 career appearances vs. N.L. Central clubs, earning his lone win at Pittsburgh (9/19/20). The Cardinals have lost all three games Woodford has pitched vs. the Cubs in his career. He got his first MLB hit, an opposite field single, off the Cubs’ Kyle Hendricks (6/12/21).

Game Trends

  • Cubs are 0-5 in their last 5 Monday games.
  • Cardinals are 3-10 in their last 13 during game 1 of a series.
  • Cardinals are 3-13 in their last 16 vs. National League Central.
  • Under is 9-4-1 in the last 14 meetings.
  • Under is 4-1 in the last 5 meetings in St. Louis.
  • Cubs are 5-1 in the last 6 meetings.

Expert Prediction

  • Cardinals 5, Cubs 3
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