This is a fun time of year to be a baseball fan, as we are entering the home stretch of the regular season and seeing the playoff races kick up a notch. With the trade deadline hitting on Wednesday afternoon, we are going to see some moves that could potentially take those battles into an even higher gear. While the schedule makers have no real way of knowing who will be sitting where at this stage of the season, it’s almost as though they were blessed with a crystal ball that saw all the way into this coming week. We have a great selection of series on tap to start the week, many of which have serious playoff implications.
This one, though, might be the pick of the bunch, as it features a pair of teams locked in a tight battle for division supremacy. The Chicago Cubs will be on the road to face the St. Louis Cardinals, and while this series will not decide who wins the NL Central, it may give one team a bit of an advantage. The Cubs are favored by 1 ½, with the run total set at 8 ½.
Cubs vs Cardinals MLB Week 18 Lines & Game Preview
- When: Tuesday, July 30 at 8:15 PM EST
- Where: Busch Stadium, St. Louis
- Starting Pitchers: Darvish vs. Wainwright
- TV: MLB Extra Innings
- Radio: 92.9 ESPN
- Live Stream: MLB.tv
- MLB Week 18 Lines: Chicago Cubs -120 (Total 9)
Why bet on the Chicago Cubs?
When you have a division race that is as tight as the one in the NL Central, you can usually look and see a stat that could cripple a team moving forward. In the case of the Cubs, which are currently tied for first with the Cardinals, it is their play on the road that could well prove to be their Achilles heel. They have been, as always, very good at Wrigley Field, but it all seems to fall apart away from home, where they are just 20-31 SU.
That stat has not been improving, with Chicago winning just 2 of their last 7 road games. On the upside, they do have a positive record versus the Cardinals this season, holding a 6-3 edge in the season series. The Cubs will have Yu Darvish (3-4, 4.54 ERA) on the mound on Tuesday night.
- Runs: 4.99
- Hits: 8.49
- Walks: 3.69
- Strike Outs: 9.21
- Runs: 4.38
- Hits: 8.38
- Walks: 3.35
- Strike Outs: 8.50
Why bet on the St. Louis Cardinals?
The St. Louis Cardinals had the opportunity to steal the division lead over the weekend, but they dropped 2 of 3 to the Houston Astros at home, so head into the new week still locked in a tie with the Cubs. Losing a series to the Astros is certainly nothing to be ashamed about, but with a 29-22 record at home, the Cardinals would probably have hoped for a more positive outcome.
Despite losing back to back games to end the weekend, the Cardinals are still 7-3 in their last 10, so this is a team very much in form, going 12-4 SU in their last 16 games. They are also 9-3 ATS as a home dog and will have Adam Wainwright (7-7, 4.63 ERA) in as the starter.
- Runs: 4.61
- Hits: 8.20
- Walks: 3.31
- Strike Outs: 8.49
- Runs: 4.38
- Hits: 8.12
- Walks: 3.37
- Strike Outs: 8.61
Cubs vs Cardinals MLB Week 18 Betting Trends
- Cubs are 81-71 against the money line after a win over the last 2 seasons
- Cardinals are 14-5 against the money line at home when the money line is +125 to -125 this season
- Darvish is 0-0 when starting against ST LOUIS with an ERA of 5.40 and a WHIP of 1.700
- Wainwright is 16-12 when starting against CHICAGO CUBS with an ERA of 4.01 and a WHIP of 1.292
- Cubs are 2-5 SU in their last 7 games on the road
- The total has gone UNDER in 9 of Chi Cubs’ last 12 games
- Cardinals are 5-0 SU in their last 5 games against an opponent in the National League
- The total has gone UNDER in 8 of St. Louis’ last 10 games at home
Expert Pick & Final Score Prediction for Cubs vs Cardinals
I expect this entire series to be tight, but I think that it might just be the Cubs who come out on top, at least in the opener. I do like the Cards to keep it close, so the bet here would be St. Louis ATS.
Score: Chicago Cubs 5 – St. Louis Cardinals 4