MLB

Picks and Predictions

The New York Mets have fallen off their blistering pace they started this season, but they still hold a 2.5-game lead in the National League East and are two wins behind the Los Angeles Dodgers for the best record in the NL.

They hope to pad their divisional lead and catch the Dodgers with Thursday opening a four-game series with the Chicago Cubs (34-54), who are fighting to stay out of the NL Central basement.

The Mets (55-34) send veteran righty Carlos Carrasco to the bump. He is 9-4 with a 4.55 ERA and a 1.34 WHIP (Walks, Hits per Innings Pitched). He’s allowed three earned runs in his last two starts, perhaps turning a corner from a rough stretch in June when he surrendered 11 runs in two outings.

Keegan Thompson opposes him for the Cubs. He’s having a great year, sporting a 7-3 record with a 3.04 ERA and 1.17 WHIP. He pitched 5.2 scoreless innings against the Dodgers his last time out.

New York Mets at Chicago Cubs Match Info

Location: Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois

Date: Thursday, July 14, 2022

Time: 8:05 p.m. ET

TV: SNY, MARQUEE

New York Mets at Chicago Cubs Odds

Odds are listed in moneyline, run line and over/under order:

  • BetOnline – Mets -124, Cubs +114; Mets -1.5 (+137), Cubs +1.5 (-157); 8
  • Bovada – Mets -130, Cubs +108; Mets -1.5 (+130), Cubs +1.5 (-150); 8.5
  • MyBookie – Moneyline only: Mets -140, Cubs +120
  • BetUS – Mets -125, Cubs +115; Mets -1.5 (+135), Cubs +1.5 (-155); 7.5
  • BetNow – Mets -120, Cubs +110; Mets -1.5 (+130), Cubs +1.5 (-150); 8

The best moneyline odds on the Mets are at BetNow, offering -120, while the best Cubs moneyline odds are at MyBookie +120, which is only offering moneyline as of this writing. The run line favors the Mets, and a win by two runs or more would have +137 odds at BetOnline.

The best Cubs run line payout is at Bovada or BetNow at +1.5 (-150). Over/unders are a little split, with some giving the under the favorite and others the over and span across one run.

Betting Trends

  • Dating back to 2021, the Cubs went 4-3 against the Mets
  • In that season series the under was 5-2
  • Over the last ten games the Mets are 6-4
  • The Cubs are 2-8 in their last ten games

Mets should showcase strength

The Mets’ offense has been a strong suit this season, scoring 4.76 runs per game to rank fifth in the league. Their .254 batting average is fourth, while an OPS of .724 is 10th. The biggest key is they don’t strike out a lot, doing so 7.66 times per game, the fourth fewest in baseball.

Pete Alonso will attempt to defend his consecutive Home Run Derby titles next week. He’ll look to add to his total of 23 bombs so far this season and 72 RBIs, both team highs while sporting a .268 batting average and .871 OPS.

He’s been the big thumper, but there isn’t an easy out in the entire lineup, featuring Francisco Lindor, Brandon Nimmo, Eduardo Escobar, Starling Marte, Jeff McNeil, and an upstart Luis Guillorme.

The pitching staff is also top-10. They allow 3.96 runs per game, ranking ninth, with an opposing batting average of .233 (eighth) and opposing OPS of .677 (seventh). They also average the third most strikeouts per game with 9.58.

The starting rotation has been great, with Carrasco performing the worst among those with ten starts, and the bullpen has been lockdown. Edwin Diaz is 19 for 22 in save opportunities and has 73 strikeouts in 36.1 innings pitched.

Cubs need to support Thompson

This may be the only time in the series the Cubs have a pitching advantage starting a game, though starters for the rest of the weekend haven’t been announced by either team. Thompson has been effective at stranding baserunners for not being a power pitcher.

He’s also been a bright spot for a pitching staff, allowing 5.21 runs per game, ranking 25th. Opponents have a batting average of .252 against Cubs pitching, which ranks 23rd, and opposing OPS of .757, ranking 25th.

It doesn’t help that the staff has ten pitchers on the injured list or posted with an injury designation, with reliever Justin Steele probable (personal). They do strike out opponents 8.9 times per game, which ranks 11th.

The offense has been the strong suit for the team all year. The Cubs score 4.38 runs per game, ranking a league average 15th. Their .245 batting average ranks 13th, and a .718 OPS is 14th. 

Ian Happ has been consistent with a .276 average, 23 doubles, two triples, eight home runs, 40 RBIs, and 39 runs scored.

Willson Contreras is an All-Star and also a trade candidate, hitting .266 with a .867 OPS with 17 doubles, 13 home runs, and 47 runs scored. Nico Hoerner is hitting .306, while Christian Morel has impressed with ten doubles, three triples, nine home runs, and 34 runs scored, showcasing speed as well.

Patrick Wisdom has provided power with 17 doubles and 17 home runs and is tied with Contreras for the team lead in runs scored.

New York Mets at Chicago Cubs Picks and Predictions

  • The moneyline indicates the Mets are going to win, and looking at everything on paper, it appears so. But it is still considerably close in large part because of Thompson’s performance as a starter this season.
  • The over/under is all over the place, which is a rarity for these sportsbooks when comparing them from game to game. It’s hard to glean which way things can go, but the bettor certainly has his or her pick if they want to go over 7.5 or under 8.5 or find the right odds elsewhere.
  • At the end of the day, this comes down to trust sometimes. It’s a lot more trusting that the Mets are going to work pitch counts, get runners on base and find ways to score them as they have all season. Thompson also has a history of not pitching deep into games, and the relievers behind him aren’t as strong. We’ll take Mets -120.

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