The Cubs' season has been filled with highs and lows, and after this past weekend, they are currently amid another low point. Chicago went to London for their two-game series as one of the hottest teams in baseball, but since their return, they have gone 1-5. With the All-Star break approaching, the team will be looking to right the ship, starting today in Milwaukee. We’ll preview the game before going over which side I’ll be backing.
While Chicago has been struggling over their past ten games, another team in their division, the Milwaukee Brewers, have been playing solid baseball as they are 7-3 in that span. With their 6-3 win yesterday over the Pirates, the Brewers secured their third straight series win and are now tied with the Reds for first place in the division. In yesterday’s win, Milwaukee took a 3-2 lead in the third on a William Contreras three-run home run and never trailed in the game after that.
Milwaukee also got a strong 6 ⅔ innings from Colin Rea, as he allowed two earned runs on five hits. With the attention now turned to the Cubs, the Brewers will send veteran Julio Teheran to the mound for his 8th start of the season. The right-hander had been impressive through his first six starts but was roughed up by the Mets his last time on the mound, allowing seven earned runs in 5 ⅔ innings.
Teheran will take on a Cubs lineup today that was able to sum up their inconsistency pretty well over their three-game series with the Guardians. Chicago opened the series with ten runs in game one, then they were shut out in game two, and yesterday they scored six runs but still lost 8-6. The offense did not come out strong last night, but they were able to score five runs in the last two innings to send the game to extras, where they would eventually lose.
On the mound for Chicago today will be left-hander Drew Smyly, as he’ll represent a Cubs pitching staff that has allowed five or more runs in four of their last six games. Smyly’s last outing against the Phillies was a short one, in which he allowed seven earned runs on nine hits in 3 ⅔ innings.
The Milwaukee Brewers are currently listed at (+100) on the moneyline to start this NL Central series, and I’ll be backing them for my play in this one. The Brew Crew has been finding a lot of success off left-handed pitching recently, and on the other side, the Cubs have struggled on the road and are 0-4 in their last four games after allowing five or more runs.
Over the last month, the Milwaukee Brewers are hitting .277 against left-handed pitching at home, and they are also ranked 8th in wRC+, 7th in wOBA, and 6th in OPS. Not only have they had success in this spot, but their matchup tonight in Drew Smyly is favorable since opponents are hitting .256 off him on the road this season, which has his expected FIP in this spot at 5.29.
While the Brewers' offense is primed for a big day, the Cubs lineup has struggled in this spot as of late, as they are hitting .210 with a .630 OPS against right-handed pitching on the road over the past month. Julio Teheran may have struggled his last time out, but opponents are hitting .171 off him at home to go along with a 3.46 FIP.
Milwaukee Brewers (+100)