By Hector Duran
The Cubs were able to get a narrow 3-0 victory over the Reds and it was good to see them win without Yu Darvish or Kyle Hendricks having to start. David Bote was the hero knocking in a 2 run triple that Nick Castellanos misplayed in right field. Tyler Mahle and Alec Mills both notched quality starts for their respective clubs but the Cubs were able to come out on top and now have a 3 game lead over the Cardinals while the Reds 3.5 games out of the 8 seed. Tonight is game 2 of the 3 game series. Let’s get into it!
- Moneyline: CIN +135; CHC -155
- Spread: CIN +1.5 (-165); CHC -1.5 (+145)
- Total: 6.5; Over (-115); Under (-105)
- First Pitch: 7:15pm CST, Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL
Trevor Bauer (who has become one of my favorite pitchers for both on the field and off the field reasons) will start tonight for the Red Legs and he is 3-3 with a 2.05 ERA. In his last start against the Cubs (which was only two starts ago) he was tagged for a pair of homers from Anthony Rizzo and went 5.1 innings and only gave up 3 runs and 4 hits. Bauer does have decent numbers against the Cubs hitters and the hitter that might give him some fuss is Rizzo who is batting .462 against him. Aristides Aquino is a guy to keep an eye out for tonight if he gets the start. He will be facing Yu Darvish and he is 2-5 against him with both of those hits being home runs. I doubt he will take Darvish deep again tonight due to the wind (more on that below) but he knows how to put up a good at bat against him. Also, the Reds do not have a lot of speedy guys and really do not know how to manufacture runs. They just rely on the long ball which you cannot do.
Yu “Cy Young” Darvish will get the ball as the Cubs look to extend their winning streak to 3. Darvish comes into tonight with a 7-1 record and an NL best 1.44 ERA. His last start came against St. Louis where he went 7 innings and only gave up 1 hit and 1 run which turned out to be a solo home run from Matt Carpenter. He walked 0 batters while striking out 11 and has shown great command of all of his pitches. The Reds are last in the MLB with a .210 batting average so Darvish should be able to cruise tonight. As noted above, Anthony Rizzo is the guy to keep an eye out for tonight. Also, we may get to see Jason Heyward back in the lineup tonight who was out due to some illness issue. Having Heyward in right field will improve the defense behind Darvish and his leadership presence is always a plus.
Analysis and Best Bet
We should be in for another great pitching matchup tonight with Bauer and Darvish. According to Tom Skilling and the rest of the weather crew in the city, the wind will be blowing in again. Not as much as last night but still nonetheless. I am going to take the under 6.5 on this one. Cincinnati was able to draw 5 walks last night but could not turn it into runs. Darvish does not walk a lot of hitters so I can see the Reds struggling to not only score runs but also get baserunners. Trevor Bauer is no slouch either as he has been pitching well all season. I think we will see a better pitching matchup than last night where the under will hit.