Cubs vs. Brewers
Where: Miller Park
When: June 11th, 2018 8:10PM ET
Moneyline: Cubs -117 / Brewers +107
By Prognosticator Darin Zank
Is it too early to say “big series” in baseball? Because that’s what we’ve got with the Brewers and Cubs beginning Monday night at Miller Park (8:10 pm ET). Which way are we going on this one with our free MLB picks?
Most MLB betting odds opened Chicago with Jose Quintana at around -130 over Milwaukee and Junior Guerra, with an over/under of 8.5 runs. The early betting action then dropped that line about a nickel at some shops.
Monday Set Up
The Cubs just took two of three from Pittsburgh over the weekend, missing out on the sweep by losing Sunday 7-1. So Chicago is 5-0 over its last five series and 11-3 over its last 14 games.
The Cubs are also 6-1 on the unders over their last seven games, in part because of some good pitching but also because they’ve only scored a total of 20 runs over that span.
The Brewers, meanwhile, just took two of three games in Philadelphia over the weekend, missing the sweep by losing Sunday 4-3. But Milwaukee, after winning six series in a row, is only 1-2 over its last three sets and 3-5 over its last eight games.
The Brewers are also 7-3 on the unders their last ten times out.
Big-picture, at 39-26 Milwaukee leads the NL Central by a half-game over the 37-25 Cubbies.
Chicago leads this season series seven games to one, with the unders going 7-1, as the games have trended very low-scoring. The Cubs have outscored the Brewers 29-9, which means those eight meetings this season have averaged less than five total runs per.
In fact, these teams are a combined 73-50 on the unders this season.
Monday’s Arms Battle
This pitching match-up is a rematch of a game played back on April 28; a 3-0 Cubs win at Wrigley Field.
Guerra (3-4, 2.83), by our strict standards, is only 4/11 on quality starts this season, but he’s been pretty good as of late. Last Tuesday he gave up three runs in six innings against Cleveland, and over his previous five starts, he’s allowed eight runs through 28 1/3 innings. The Brewers are 6-5 with Guerra this season, with the unders going 8-2.
In that start back in April against the Cubs Guerra allowed just one run and three hits through six innings, but got no help from the Milwaukee sticks.
Lefty Quintana (6-4, 4.20) is 5/12 on QS, but one out away from being three for his last four. Last Wednesday he held the Phillies to two runs through 5 2/3 innings, striking out 10, and over his previous four starts, he’s allowed six runs through 23 innings. Chicago is 8-4 with Quintana this year, the totals 6-6.
In two starts this season against the Brewers Quintana has tossed 13 scoreless innings, allowing just five hits, with 13 K’s. The Cubs won both those games by scores of 3-0.
We’re giving Chicago a short handicapping edge in this pitching match-up.
Speaking of handicapping, check out our insightful article on handicapping bullpens.
Monday’s Batting Splits
The Cubs rank 3rd in the Majors this year against right-handed pitching with a .261 team batting average, 1st with a .342 team OBP and 10th with a .420 team slugging percentage.
Milwaukee ranks 26th against left-handed pitching with a .229 BA, 23rd with a .308 OBP and 26th with a .376 slugging percentage.
Chicago gets the easy check-mark in the battling splits for Monday.
The Cubs bullpen ranks 3rd in the ML with a 2.79 ERA and 9th with a 1.22 WHIP, while going 19/25 on save opportunities.
The Brewers pen ranks 1st in ERA at 2.53 and 3rd in WHIP at 1.14 while going 17/27 on save opportunities.
We’ll give Milwaukee a short edge in the bullpen match-up.
Free MLB Pick
As mentioned above Chicago leads this series seven games to one, but these teams are closer than that. It’s about time the Brewers start cutting into that deficit. We’re taking the home dog here.