Braves vs. Cubs MLB Picks: Back Chicago To Keep Rolling

Jake Walker

Friday, April 29, 2016 11:21 PM GMT

The Atlanta Braves (5-18) travel to Wrigley Field to face the Chicago Cubs (17-5). The Cubs are at -215 on the MLB odds board while the Braves are at 199 and the total has not been set.

Game Information
Atlanta Braves (5-18) vs. Chicago Cubs (17-5)
2:20 PM ET, April 29
Wrigley Field
Coverage: FSSO, CSN
Forecast for Game Time:
49° F/ 9° C 
Rain

 

Atlanta Braves
The Atlanta Braves lost the series opener against the Chicago Cubs 6-1. Rookie starter Aaron Blair, in his second career start, retired 11 straight batters and didn't allow a hit until the fifth. He allowed two hits and three walks in six innings but the Cubs broke the game open with a five-run eight inning.

The Braves currently rank 27th in the majors with 74 runs scored, 26th with a .229 batting average and 30th with just five home runs. Atlanta is 27th in MLB with a 4.98 ERA and 26th with a 1.47 WHIP.

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Chicago Cubs
The Chicago Cubs have won six of their last seven games, including the series opener against the Braves. Matt Szczur, who came in as a midgame defensive replacement, hit his first career grand slam in the eighth inning and Jon Lester finished with 10 strikeouts over seven innings to help the Cubs improve to 17-5, their best 22-game start since 1907 (18-4).

The Cubs rank second in the majors with 130 runs scored, 11th with a .255 batting average and 8th with 27 home runs. Chicago is second in MLB with a 2.46 ERA and first with an 0.98 WHIP.     

 

Pitching Matchup
Julio Teheran (0-3, 4.60 ERA) vs. John Lackey (3-1, 4.97 ERA)
Julio Teheran will take the hill for the Braves. Teheran is expected to be the ace of Atlanta's rotation but he is winless in five starts this season and is 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA in one road start. He is 18-21 with a 4.17 ERA in 52 career games (51 starts) away from Turner Field. The right-hander has pitched well against the Cubs, going 2-0 with a 3.82 ERA in five career starts, including 2-0 with a 3.46 ERA at Wrigley Field.

John Lackey starts for the Cubs. So far he is 3-1 with a 4.97 ERA in four starts and he went 13-10 with a 2.77 ERA in 33 starts with the Cardinals. Lackey is 9-4 with a 1.93 ERA in 17 career starts at Wrigley Field and 1-1 with a 2.76 ERA in three career starts against the Braves. 

Betting Trends
The Braves are 1-6 in day games, 5-18 in games played on a grass field, 2-11 when playing against a team with a winning record and 12-43 in their last 55 road games. 

The Cubs are 7-2 in home games, 17-5 in games played on a grass field, 12-4 against right-handed starters and 31-12 in their last 43 home games. 

 

Final Analysis
The Chicago Cubs are favored on the MLB odds board at -215 while the Atlanta Braves are at +199 and the total has not been set. The Braves are the worst team in the majors for a reason, their pitching and their hitting just can't keep games close against a Cubs team that has the best record in baseball. Look for Lackey to keep Atlanta's lineup in check. I'm taking the Cubs -215 with one of my MLB picks on Saturday.

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MLB Pick: Cubs -215
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline