Pittsburgh Pirates vs Chicago Cubs MLB Betting Prediction

MLB Pittsburgh Pirates vs Chicago Cubs Prediction 5/18/2024

The Pittsburgh Pirates (21-25) travel to face off against the Chicago Cubs (25-21) on Saturday, May 18th. This game will be played at Wrigley Field in Chicago and televised on MARQ. The Pirates are coming off a win in their previous game, while the Cubs are looking to get back on track from a loss to the Pirates. First pitch is set for 2:20 ET.

Pirates vs Cubs

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Pittsburgh cruised to a 9-3 win over the Cubs in the most recent game of this series. The Pirates had a huge 8th inning, scoring three runs in the 1st and adding five more in the 2nd. As for the Cubs, they scored their only three runs in the 5th. Heading into the game, the Pirates were favored at -118 on the money line.

Paul Skenes pitched well for the Pirates in this one, going six innings and striking out 11 without giving up a run. He picked up a win in the game, while Kyle Hendricks had a rough outing for the Cubs, taking the loss. Hendricks went just 4 2/3 innings and gave up seven earned runs.

Jared Triolo and Andrew McCutchen each homered for the Pirates, while Connor Joe went 3/5 with an RBI. Yasmani Grandal also had a two-hit game and drove in three runs.

Pittsburgh is 21-25 overall and 6.0 games behind the Brewers for the NL Central lead. So far, they are 6-6 in divisional games and have taken the first two games of this series vs. the Cubs. The Pirates lead the Cubs by four games in the division.

At home, the Pirates are just 9-12 this year, but they have gone 12-13 on the road. As the underdog, Pittsburgh is 14-13 compared to 7-12 as the favorite. The Pirates have won two straight on the road, and their overall series record is 4-7-3. They have dropped three straight series overall.

The Pirates have been a solid bet against the run line this season, going 25-21. They have been especially good on the road, where they are 15-10. Their average run margin is -0.6, but they have a positive run differential in winning games, outscoring opponents by an average of 2.7 runs per contest.

So far this season, the Pittsburgh Pirates have played 31 games with over/under lines set higher than 7.5 runs, and the over has hit in 22 of those contests. Their games have averaged 8.3 runs per game, and their over/under record is 22-23. Today’s over/under line is set at 7.5 runs, and the over has hit in three straight games for the Pirates.

Bailey Falter Gets The Start For The Pirates

Pittsburgh is sending left-hander Bailey Falter to the mound today vs. the Cubs. He has made eight starts this season and has a record of 2-2 with an ERA of 4.15. Falter’s WHIP for the season is currently 1.04. In his last outing, he finished with a no-decision, going six innings and giving up two earned runs on five hits. Looking back over his last three outings, Falter has finished with a no-decision in each one. He has allowed at least one homer in three straight outings. Opponents are batting .215 off Falter this season.

Pirates Offense Breakdown

Heading into today’s game, the Pirates offense is averaging just 3.8 runs per game, which is 24th in the league. This is a result of their poor home offense, as they are averaging just 3.3 runs per game at home. The Pirates do have a good team walk rate and are near the top of the league in home runs, but they are batting just .226 as a team.

Over his last four games, Andrew McCutchen has gone 6/17 with two homers and three RBIs. This has raised his season average to just .213. Bryan Reynolds is also swinging a hot bat, going 9/22 in his last five games, including one home run. He is batting .254 for the season and is 2nd on the team with 20 RBIs.

With a record of 25-21, the Cubs are 2nd in the NL Central, two games behind the Brewers for the division lead. The Cubs have dropped two straight games, and this season, they are 4-4 in divisional matchups. Chicago has really struggled at home recently, having lost three straight at home and are just 7-5 as the home favorite this year.

Chicago has dropped the first two games of this series vs. the Pirates, and they are just 4-6 in their last 10 games overall. So far, they have been a perfect 7-0 in series, and their overall series record is 7-5-2.

Chicago has been a run line bettor’s dream on the road this season, going 15-10 against the number. The Cubs have an average run margin of +0.2 on the season, but that number jumps to +1.2 at home. They have a run line record of 10-11 at Wrigley Field, and their run line record as the favorite is just 6-12. The Cubs have gone under the run line in five straight home games.

The Cubs have had their last two games go over the total, but their over/under record when the line is set at 7.5 runs is just 6-7. The Cubs and Pirates have a combined run average of 8.9 runs per game this season, and the over/under line for today’s game is set at 7.5 runs. The Cubs’ over/under record for the season is 20-24, and the average over/under line for their games is 8 runs per game.

Shota Imanaga Gets The Start For The Cubs

Shota Imanaga gets the start for the Cubs today and will be looking to improve on his record of 5-0. So far, he has made eight starts and has a WHIP of .94 to go along with an ERA of .96. Imanaga has been especially tough on the road, coming in with a record of 3-0 and an ERA of 0.36. At home, his ERA is 1.39. Imanaga’s last outing came against the Braves, where he went five innings, giving up three homers and seven hits. He finished with a no-decision in that outing. Before that, he had won three straight starts.

Cubs Offense Breakdown

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So far this season, the Cubs are averaging 4.5 runs per game, which is 12th in the league. At home, they have been even better, putting up 4.8 runs per contest. As a team, they are batting .234, and their team on-base percentage is .316. Chicago has been good at avoiding strikeouts this season, and they are 4th in the league in walks.

Christopher Morel and Cody Bellinger are the Cubs’ top power threats, with Morel leading the team with nine homers and Bellinger right behind him with seven. Morel is also 8th in the league with 31 RBIs. However, Morel is batting just .215 for the season and has gone 4/22 over his last six games. Bellinger is also looking to get back on track, as he is just 6/24 in his last six games.

Pirates vs Cubs Prediction

Our prediction for this Cubs vs. Pirates matchup is to take the Cubs to win, but with the money line sitting at -200, we recommend taking the over, with the line being set at 7.5 runs.

If you’re looking for some potential payouts, a Cubs vs. Pirates 6-5 win could be a good option. However, we see the Cubs having a little more success at the plate, finishing with nine hits compared to the Pirates, who we have finishing with nine strikeouts.

All odds are courtesy of Action247 Sportsbook. Good luck!!

* All odds are provided by Action247 Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.**All views expressed are my own. My picks are my own and are not a guarantee, bet at your own risk.Action247 does not warrant the accuracy of completeness of the information, text, graphics, links or other items contained within these post.