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Handicapper and player prop expert John Hyslop is here with his top MLB player prop bet for Tuesday. His pick comes from the Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates game with his sights set on Cubs starting pitcher Keegan Thompson.

Chicago Cubs vs Pittsburgh Pirates Prediction: Can Keegan Thompson Shut Down Ke'Bryan Hayes and the Pirates?

As well as the Strikeout Watch List did (again) last night, there was one play that I lost. Like any loss, you move on but it's how you move on that matters. What I like to do is open my sportsbook app, go to the MLB page and take the first game of the day. That way, I'm not a loser for long. In fact, we'll be winners again before the night games even start if we do this. Sounds pretty smart to me.

When I did that today, the Pittsburgh Pirates vs Chicago Cubs game stared right back at me. Honestly, it's probably the best game on the slate for what we want to do. Especially when you look at who's starting for the Chicago Cubs. It's like Rob Manfred and God got together and said, "here, take this win guys." I don't know about you but when divine intervention is involved, I don't ask questions. Let's dive into my pick, prediction, and odds for the Cubs vs Pirates game.

Cubs vs. Pirates Start Time, Where to Watch, and Odds

  • Date: July 26, 2022
  • Game Time: 2:20 pm ET
  • Where to Watch: ESPN+

Click Here for Cubs vs Pirates Odds

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Cubs vs. Pirates Line Movement

Chicago Cubs vs Pittsburgh Pirates Pick

Keegan Thompson Over 4.5 Strikeouts (+125) (Bet $100 to win $125)

*Odds available at DraftKings at time of publishing*

We're at DraftKings for this one since FanDuel is hanging 4.5 (+104). It's not the end of the world if you have to play at FanDuel but if we're being honest (we are), the DraftKings price is legit. I'd be pissed if my friend got +125 while I was sitting there like a bum holding a +104 ticket. But at the end of the day, both are better than pretty much every other legal shop since those are the only two I've seen with numbers for this guy.

Chicago Cubs vs Pittsburgh Pirates Prediction

Keegan Thompson is a guy we all know pretty well at this point. The kid has made us some coin already this season. We all saw him do it. The good news is, the books still haven't figured him out yet so we might as well let him keep stuffing cash in our pockets. It's not totally the books' fault though since we're talking about a 75 strikeout in 81.1 innings pitched guy but still. They should know better by now to not give us a 4.5 at plus money. It's just common sense. We're talking about Keegan Thompson here.

The haters are going to ask, "is this the same Keegan Thompson that only struck out one New York Met in his last start?" The answer is yes. For starters, there's only one Keegan Thompson so that's a dumb question. On top of that, nobody strikes out the New York Mets. It just doesn't happen. The haters get real quiet when you bring up the fact that our boy Thompson fanned at least seven in four of five starts before the Mets game. One of those starts was against the Pittsburgh Pirates which is who he's facing today.

Nobody in their right mind would brag about sitting down seven Pittsburgh Pirates so I'm not going to. I won't even bring up the other time he pitched against Pittsburgh when he laid down five of them in 65 pitches. We're talking about a team that strikes out all the time. In fact, only two teams in MLB have struck out more than they have this season. Over the last week, they've fanned 40 times in just 130 at-bats. That's more than 30% of the time for you math people. This feels like a great way to spend an afternoon but only if you like winning bets.

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Article Author


John has spent the past 20+ years betting sports on a daily basis and is considered by many to be a walking sports betting encyclopedia. From obscure player props to sides and totals, if there is an angle, John will find it. His work has appeared on Rotogrinders and he has been a regular on sports talk radio stations across the country. Based in the US, John operates a blog & podcast, Sports Bets Beers, which covers betting angles in the NFL, NBA, MLB, & NHL.


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