Chicago Cubs at Kansas City Royals Betting Preview

Jose VasquezArticles, Baseball, MLB

The Kansas City Royals are trying to avoid dropping their fourth consecutive game as they play host to the Chicago Cubs at Ewing M. Kauffman Stadium. The game will begin at 8:15 p.m. ET and this interleague showdown will be televised on either NSC+ or FSKC.

Chicago Cubs at Kansas City Royals Odds

Oddsmakers are listing Kansas City (+185) as the underdog to Chicago (-200). Bettors can wager on the game’s total with odds sitting at -120 for over 9.5 runs and +100 for under 9.5. Gamblers can also bet on the game’s runline with the most recent odds sitting at -140 for the Cubs -1.5 runs and +120 for the Royals +1.5 runs.

The Cubs are 64-46 SU and are 56-54 against the spread (ATS). The team hasn’t moved the needle much this year, gaining 1.4 units for moneyline bettors and 2.1 units ATS. Chicago is 3-4 ATS over its last seven games and the total has gone under in four of those seven. The Royals, on the other hand, are 34-76 SU and 50-60 ATS. They’ve lost 27.8 units for moneyline bettors and 19.5 units ATS. Kansas City has covered the spread four times in its last seven games and the over has cashed in five of those seven.

Royals games have a 47-57-6 over/under record in 2018. Cubs games have gone under 57 times, gone over 51 times and pushed on two occasions.

Cole Hamels will get the nod for the Cubbies. The left-handed Hamels (6-9, 4.53 ERA) has racked up 123 strikeouts in 119.1 innings so far. He’s 1-1 with nine strikeouts and a 3.38 ERA against Kansas City this year (two starts).

The Royals will turn to righty Jakob Junis (6-11, 5.12 ERA) to the mound. Junis has 106 strikeouts and 35 walks to his credit, as well as a WHIP of 1.35. Junis has yet to face the Cubs this year and did not record a start against them in 2017.

As a unit, Kansas City’s pitchers have allowed 5.5 runs per game overall this season. Its starters have a 5.31 ERA, 1.48 WHIP and 7.4 strikeouts per nine innings. The bullpen has a 5.41 ERA, 1.55 WHIP and 7.1 K/9.

The Kansas City hitters are putting up 3.7 runs per outing, including 4.7 per game over its last 10 games and 4.8 per game over their last five. The team has hit .229/.288/.359 over its last five games and is 2-3 SU during that stretch.

The Royals’ hitters have been led by second baseman Whit Merrifield and third baseman Mike Moustakas. Merrifield is slashing .301/.370/.424 with six home runs, 35 RBIs, 53 runs and 25 stolen bases, while Moustakas is batting .249 with 20 homers, 62 RBIs and 46 runs.

In the visiting dugout, Chicago’s pitching staff allowed 4.1 runs per game and its starters own a 4.10 ERA, 1.38 WHIP and 7.67 K/9. The bullpen has an ERA of 3.27, along with a WHIP of 1.38 and a K-per-9 of 8.74.

The Cubs offense has slashed .266/.348/.425 on its way to 5.0 runs scored per game this season, including 4.2 runs per game over the team’s last 10 games and 4.8 per game over the team’s last five outings (3-2 SU).

Second baseman Javier Baez and first baseman Anthony Rizzo continue to lead Chicago’s hitters. Baez is hitting .299/.333/.577 with 23 home runs, 84 RBIs, 69 runs and 19 stolen bases, while Rizzo is slashing .264/.361/.450 with 17 homers, 73 RBIs and 47 runs scored.

The Cubs have lost 5.2 units and are 41-43 ATS when facing a right-handed starting pitcher this year. The over has cashed in 40 of those games, compared to 42 that’ve gone under in such games. On the other hand, the Royals have lost 2.4 units and are 20-15 ATS when facing a lefty starter. The over has hit in 13 of those games, compared to 21 that went under.

Chicago Cubs vs. Kansas City Royals Free Pick

Predictions: SU Winner – Cubs, ATS Winner – Cubs, O/U – OVER

Betting Trends

  • The under has hit in just two of Kansas City’s last seven games.
  • The Cubs have hit 13 home runs in their last 10 games. The Royals have hit 12 over their last 10.
  • The Chicago defense has allowed six errors over its last five games, compared to zero errors for Kansas City over its last five.