Chicago Cubs vs. Miami Marlins Prediction & Over/Under Pick
Chicago Cubs at Miami Marlins
First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET
Probable pitchers: Adbert Alzolay (4-12, 4.71 ERA) vs. Jesus Luzardo (3-5, 7.36 ERA)
Think about this for a minute: Why would tonight’s series opener featuring two starting pitchers that have collectively contributed north of a 12.00 ERA be labeled with an over/under as low as 7.5?
Aside from sharps on my level that attacked this game when it came out with a total of 8 yesterday evening (I don’t look until early-morning hours), the books simply know both hurlers are easily better.
Alzolay — as I continue to stress — is certainly superior to his overall stat line. He’s coming off a dandy of an outing (in an under we won), when he pitched into the seventh inning and kept the hard-hitting first-place White Sox to a minimum.
He now holds a 3.89 xFIP, by the way, indicating if he wasn’t having such bad luck with the long ball, the Cubs righty would be enjoying a nice year right now.
Notably, Alzolay hasn’t yielded any homers across his last two assignments, and to me, that’s a sign that things are finally evening out for the 26-year-old. There’s also, of course, the fact that tonight’s next assignment involves a matchup opposite the Marlins, who have swatted the third-fewest taters (113) among all Major League clubs — they’re also dead last in long balls at home (43).
Best of all, this Miami offense is a far cry from what it was just a couple of weeks ago; not just because of the players they lost at the deadline but also considering the absence of Jazz Chisholm Jr. (illness).
The Cubs certainly know that feeling after losing all three of Kris Bryant, Javier Baez and Anthony Rizzo (not to mention Joc Pederson). In their 11 August contests, Chicago is 2-9 while plating just 3.36 runs per game during the month. It’s not pretty.
Thus, the other starter in this affair, Luzardo, will also be seeing a welcoming sight — an offense that is slogging along.
The former Oakland Athletic, who was one of those key youngsters Miami got back after dealing away veterans, can thrive in this spot. Though he’s coming off a rough performance, we’ll give Luzardo a pass on that, since it came at Coors Field. Nevertheless, the potential is there for the southpaw to shine in a shutdown showing.
Luzardo’s talent cannot be denied. He won’t have a better opportunity to impress his new teammates than this particular date against a downtrodden opponent.
Pick: UNDER 7.5 (-116)
Reds-Phillies Under 8.5
2021 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: “63-52-8,” +4.5 units
Yesterday’s Result: Tigers-Orioles Under 10.5 (WIN)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 uni