Cross Town Rivalry MLB Picks - White Sox Bats Questionable With Cubs' Ace On The Hill

Jake Arrieta

Monday, July 25, 2016 2:53 PM GMT

The Cubs took two of three in Milwaukee and now meet their cross-town rivals for the first of a two-game set at U. S. Cellular Field. Let's review the MLB odds in this one and cash a ticket.

CH Cubs vs CH White Sox ​
When you bet against arguably one of the best teams in baseball in their own backyard you're probably not paying attention. Consider me guilty as charged. I included the visiting Cleveland Indians in my MLB picks yesterday as they looked to avoid a series sweep at the hands of the Baltimore Orioles. What makes this even worse is that the MLB odds makers made me pay for the privilege as the Tribe was installed as a -133 favorite early Sunday morning and spiked as high as -150 at game time.

I trusted in the Indians' starter Corey Kluber but it made no difference as Cleveland fell 5-3 and it proved to be my second loss in a row after siding with the huge underdog Padres the day before. Let's get back on our horse and return to winning in this Windy City showdown on Monday night.

Cubs' Ace on the Hill
Jake Arrieta (12-4, 2.60 ERA, 1.08 WHIP) takes the mound tonight and will look to duplicate his efforts from his last start when he mowed down the Mets lineup, yet the club lost a narrow 2-1 decision despite his efforts. Last season's NL CY Young Award winner allowed only one run on five hits through seven innings of work after getting torched by the Pirates in his previous start. Arrieta is 3-1 when starting against the White Sox with an ERA of 3.82 and a WHIP of 1.245. His team's record is 5-1 (+4.4 units) in these starts.

White Sox Bats Need to Produce
If the White Sox are to have any success this evening against the team with the best record in baseball then they will need their lineup to wake up and hit. Miguel Gonzalez (2-5, 4.48 ERA, 1.34) has pitched well recently after getting throttled on June 28th by the Blue Jays in the team's 10-8 setback. Gonzalez was destroyed by Toronto's potent offense as evidenced by his eight runs on 10 hits allowed in just five plus innings of work. Since that time he has bounced back with a 2.77 ERA and a 0.88 WHIP over the course of four starts. Gonzalez has faced the Cubs only once in his career which occurred in 2014 when he tossed six plus innings of two run, six hit baseball in the 2-1 loss.

Betting Analysis
Jake Arrieta is 8-2 with an ERA of 3.44 n 10 road starts this season. The Cubs are on the verge of getting flame-throwing closer Aroldis Chapman and even without him are the dominant team in baseball right now. The club has not been playing their best ball of the season recently but still have a 7-3 record over their last 10 games.

Conversely, the White Sox have dropped eight of their last 11 contests and Miguel Gonzalez owns a 5.86 ERA in his five starts at home this season where his record sits at 2-3. The White Sox also have a middling 25-24 record at U.S. Cellular Field this season and will greet their Chicago neighbors for the first time this season.

It is a huge leap of faith to bet against Jake Arrieta particularly when he bounced back in fine form in his last appearance after a few rocky starts. Arrieta had 2015 written all over him in his last outing when he threw 63 of his 85 pitches for strikes while walking no more than one batter for the seventh time this season. It would be hard to believe a club like the White Sox, mired in the bottom third in three of the four major offensive statistical categories, will be able to rough him up here. We will lay the lumber and take the visiting chalk.

Free MLB Pick: Cubs -187
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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