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St. Louis Cardinals vs. Chicago Cubs Predictions, Picks and MLB Preview – September 23, 2016

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Chicago Cubs Predictions, Picks and MLB Preview – September 23, 2016

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St. Louis Cardinals vs. Chicago Cubs Preview

Where: Wrigley Field, Chicago

When: Friday, September 23, 2:00 PM ET

Line: St. Louis Cardinals vs. Chicago Cubs – view all MLB lines

TV Broadcast: ESPN


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Betting on the St. Louis Cardinals

By starting Mike Leake (9-10, 4.54 ERA) on Friday, the current playoff-bound St. Louis Cardinals are playing with fire. There’s a tiny window of hope, though. He’s coming off a game where he had three strikeouts and only gave up two runs, seven hits, and one walk.

After winning four straight games (two each against the Giants and Rockies) to lift their playoff chances, they took a step back on Wednesday when they were blown out by the Rockies in their season series finale, 11-1. The loss made them fall to 80-72, a half game back against the Mets and Giants who are both 81-72.

St. Louis is batting a miserable .194 opposite Jake Arrieta, the Cubs’ projected starting pitcher. Among their leading hitters, the ones with the most success are Matt Adams (.300 batting average) and Jhonny Peralta (.267), and Randal Grichuk (.444). The trio’s combined 59 at-bats with Arrieta resulted in 18 hits, eight RBIs, five walks, and one homer.

The Cards are 6-4 in their last 10 games in Wrigley Field. They have an identical record with Leake as a starter on the road.

Betting on the Chicago Cubs

Jake Arrieta (17-7, 2.96 ERA) will be up the mound Saturday afternoon for the Cubs. The six-year veteran should be on redemption mode. His last start was a frustrating 11-3 loss to the unheralded Milwaukee Brewers (September 17). In six innings, Milwaukee had four runs (three earned) on four hits and four walks.

Despite losing two of his last three starts while having a 4.15 ERA, Arrieta should stay positive, as he has a solid 2.82 ERA in his last 15 starts at Wrigley Field. Against the St. Louis Cardinals, meanwhile, he has a career record of 6-2 with a 2.03 ERA in 12 starts.

Cubs should be in for a field day. Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Dexter Fowler, and Chris Coghlan, four of their finest batters stat-wise, are all hitting above .300 versus Leake.

Even with an MLB-leading 97-55 record and a 17-game lead over NL Central Division rival Cards, the Cubs are still not in a mood to slack off. In fact, they just swept the vacation-bound Cincinnati Reds while recording no less than five scores. They could be looking to give Joe Maddon his first 100-win season as manager or coach.

The Cubs are 13-7 in Arrieta’s last 20 starts.

Writer’s Prediction

Chicago wins, 4-2.

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JE
Written by JE

Sports Betting Tips, News, and Analysis