Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#955 Chicago Cubs -130 vs.
#956 Miami Marlins 8
Tuesday, April 16, 2019 at 7:10pm EDT
Written by Sporty Jordy

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This article covers a past game!

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When and where: April 16, 2019, Marlins Park, Miami, FL, 7:10 PM ET

The Miami Marlins aim for a bounce-back win on Tuesday after dropping Game 1 to the Chicago Cubs at Marlins Park on Monday. A strong defensive performance, along with the Cubs’ continued elite offensive play, led them to their third win in four games. The Marlins hope to make it a one-time deal when they roll out Pablo Lopez to pitch opposite of Chicago’s Jose Quintana.

Marlins struggle to close out series

Winter came for Wrigley Field on Sunday.

The scheduled series finale between the Cubs and Angels was postponed due to a mixture of snow and rain hitting the city of Chicago. Tyler Chatwood was expected to start on the mound for the injured Jon Lester, but instead of keeping him as the starter against the Marlins on Monday, the Cubs went with four-time MLB All-Star Yu Darvish instead.

Darvish pitched a decent game in his 5.2 innings on the mound, striking out eight batters, while allowing four hits and two runs.

“The first inning was toughest for me,” Darvish said after the game, via ESPN.com. “After the first inning I was so tired. But I got better after that.”

After Darvish left the mound, the bullpen stood strong against the Marlins the rest of the way by allowing only two hits and no runs. Catcher Willson Contreras had a monstrous hitting night with two hits, one walk, one run and three RBIs en route to a 7-2 Game 1 victory.

Marlins struggle to close out series

Being knee-deep in a rebuild hasn’t made the Marlins impervious to the disappointment that comes with losing. There isn’t a single player on the roster that wouldn’t trade their current situation for an opportunity to build a playoff contender and compete for a championship.

But that is far from the Marlins’ reality right now.

The team has yet to win a series this season, and they blew their one shot at doing so over the weekend against the Philadelphia Phillies. After splitting the first two games, they dragged the Phillies into a 14-inning marathon that came down to Jean Segura smacking a two-run homer on Wei-Yun Chen to break a 1-1 tie and seal the game.

The Marlins haven’t shown the ability to close out tight games, which is a significant part of the rebuilding process. This is a team lacking in experience and proven veteran talent. It’s a problem they hope to rectify at some point.

There was nothing tight about Monday’s game against the Cubs. Trevor Richards was the sacrificial lamb on the mound that gave up four hits, five runs and walked three in 4.2 innings. On offense, catcher Chad Wallach knocked a 405-foot home run over the wall. That was after he scored in the second inning on a throwing error by Cubs short stop Javier Baez.

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Full-Game Side Bet

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The Cubs haven’t been a good road team so far this season, despite finishing with a 44-37 away record in 2018. They are 2-7 on the road with their only wins coming against the Marlins and Milwaukee Brewers. The Cubs are a handful for any team to deal with when their pitching holds up. Despite their struggles early in the season, they are still one of the best offensive teams in the league.

They rank fifth in batting average (.272) and third in on-base percentage (.359), along with averaging the third-most runs (6.14). Miami isn’t a very good defensive team, and they lack the offensive firepower to keep things competitive if the Cubs begin to pile up runs. That’s basically what happened on Monday, as the Marlins fell behind early and failed to mount a comeback.

They’re only averaging 2.88 runs per game and a .281 on-base percentage. Their overall pitching ERA (4.81) isn’t all that different from Chicago’s (5.43), either. They need a Superman-like performance on the mound to slow down the Cubs on offense and Lopez isn’t the right fit for the red cape. I’m taking the Cubs in this one.

Prediction: Chicago Cubs (-133)

Full-Game Total Pick

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The over is 6-1 in the Marlins’ last seven home games and 14-3 in the Cubs’ last 17 road games against a right-handed starter. I never expect much offensively from the Marlins, but the Cubs are capable of pushing over the total by themselves. Surprisingly enough, they have been even more lethal, at least offensively, on the road than they have been at home. Take the over in this game.

Prediction: Over (8)

Written By Jordy McElroy , "Sporty Jordy"

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