Lackey Will Pitch Cubs Past Dodgers on Ring Night at Wrigley

john lackey

Willie Bee

Wednesday, April 12, 2017 1:37 PM GMT

Poor defense and light hitting stymied the Dodgers in their series opener at Chicago, and they're underdogs on the MLB odds to even the set Wednesday against the Cubs, who will receive their World Series rings. 

MLB Season Record: 0-8 (-8.42)

They've had 48 hours to let all of the pomp and circumstance of their home opener sink in, and now the Chicago Cubs are ready to get down to the business of defending their title with Game 2 of the set against the Los Angeles Dodgers (8:05 PM ET). It's Ring Night at Wrigley as Cubs players and coaches will receive their gaudy World Series jewelry. Brandon McCarthy and John Lackey are on the mound, the Cubs officially opening at -142 with that money line now down to -133 at 5Dimes.

Chicago got its home schedule and this series off to a winning start in Monday's series opener, an RBI single by Anthony Rizzo in the ninth giving the Cubs a 3-2 triumph. The clubs wrap the set up Thursday afternoon, the Cubs welcoming the Pirates into town for the weekend while the Dodgers head home to host the Diamondbacks in a 4-game wraparound series.

 

Both Hurlers Seeking 2nd Wins Of 2017

Tonight's starting pitchers each earned the dubya in their season debuts, McCarthy's coming at home in last week's series finale against San Diego. The 6-foot-7 right-hander worked six frames and allowed the Padres two runs in the 10-2 final that came with the Dodgers huge -240 chalk on the MLB odds. He hasn't faced the Cubs or pitched in Wrigley in nearly three years going back to his time with Arizona, and you have to go back to 2005-06 when he was with the White Sox for his only other appearances on this mound, including his MLB debut in May '05. In two starts plus a relief outing on the North Side, McCarthy is 0-1 with a 2.18 ERA.

Lackey's first win of 2017 came in St. Louis, a 6-4 decision that wrapped up Chicago's set with the Cardinals. The Redbirds did touch the veteran up for four runs (3 earned) in his six innings, and the Dodgers chased him in Game 4 of last year's NLCS before he could retire a batter in the fifth. That was his only start against LA since he joined the Cubs, and Lackey is 6-3 with a 1.75 ERA against the Dodgers in 12 previous efforts, all but one of those interleague contests while he was with the Angels and Red Sox.

 

Umpire Notes, Mother Nature & A Free Pick

Wednesday's home plate umpire Greg Gibson is with his second crew of the season and donning the mask already for a third time. The 20-year veteran worked a couple of Giants series last week at Arizona and San Diego, both contests hopping past 8 and 8½ run totals with ease. We should see a similar total as that later this morning once the books release the number. A light 5-10 mph breeze from the east (in from right) might even push it down to 7½. It's going to be cool and cloudy otherwise, most of the game played in the mid-40s.

The fade train remains on its tracks after my free baseball pick Tuesday night came in a loser. I'm liking Lackey given how he pitched here last season.

MLB Free Pick: Cubs -133Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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