Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#909 Chicago Cubs -155 vs.
#910 Miami Marlins 8
Wednesday, April 17, 2019 at 7:10pm EDT
Written by Ricky Dimon

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The Miami Marlins and Chicago Cubs will wrap up a three-game series when they meet one more time at Marlins Park on Wednesday night. Chicago is going for a sweep after taking the first two contests. Miami is off to a predictably terrible 4-14 start, which includes a 1-8 record in its last nine outings.

Hamels time

Nothing cures a team’s ills these days quite like a matchup with the Marlins. The Cubs look to continue their quick turnaround in South Florida when they attempt to complete a three-game sweep of the host Marlins on Wednesday. Chicago is within two games of .500 following a 1-6 start as it has won four of the last five contests.

Left-hander Cole Hamels (2-0, 3.79 ERA) is taking the mound for Chicago on Wednesday. Hamels has been excellent in his last two starts, recording 11 strikeouts without a walk over 14.0 innings. The 35-year-old was dominant against the Angels this past Friday, allowing just one run and four hits with six strikeouts over 8.0 innings. Hamels is 10-15 with a 3.45 ERA in 38 career starts against Miami, including a 2-5 record and 3.14 ERA in 10 outings at Marlins Park.

Anemic offense

The Marlins haven’t put up much of a fight in the first two games of the series, as Chicago’s pitching staff easily has handled their overmatched lineup. Tuesday’s 4-0 defeat already was the fourth time this season Miami has been shut out and marked the 13th time in its first 18 contests it scored fewer than four runs.

Sandy Alcantara (1-1, 4.24 ERA) will oppose Hamels on Wednesday. Alcantara dazzled Colorado in his season debut, striking out six batters over 8.0 scoreless innings, but he hasn’t been able to produce any magic in his last two starts. The 23-year-old Dominican was tagged for six runs and 11 hits over 5.0 innings in a loss to Philadelphia last Friday after issuing five walks without recording a strikeout during 4.0 innings of work in his previous outing at Atlanta. Alcantara twice faced the Cubs in relief in 2017, allowing two unearned runs over 1.2 innings.

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Miami utility man Martin Prado went 0-for-4 on Tuesday, ending his eight-game hitting streak. The Marlins on Tuesday optioned shortstop J.T. Riddle to Triple-A New Orleans and placed reliever Austin Brice (gastroenteritis) on the injured list. Chicago is 5-0 in the last five meetings between the two teams. The Marlins are 14-37 in their last 51 against left-handed starters, 7-20 in their last 27 against losing opponents, 0-4 in their last four that are the third of a series, and 2-5 in Alcantara’s last seven starts.

Prediction: Chicago Cubs

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Miami gives up runs left and right, and Alcantara has been far from lights out so far this season. Chicago, meanwhile, has woken up on offense following a slow start to 2019. The over is 12-4 in the Cubs’ last 16 on the road, 13-3 in their last 16 on the road against right-handed starters, and 7-3 in their last 10 against the National League East. It is also 6-2 in the Marlins’ last eight at home and 4-1 in their last five at home against left-handed starters. Look for this one to go over the total.

Prediction: Over

Written By Ricky Dimon

A 2006 graduate of Davidson College, Ricky is a freelance sports writer based in Atlanta, Georgia. He has previously worked with various websites in the sports handicapping industry and is generally a fan of going with the hot hand while in most cases showing a willingness to take favorites and give the points. Beyond the four major sports, Ricky is an avid tennis fan—and writer—and covers the ATP Tour on a daily basis.