MLB Betting: Searching For Betting Value In Dodgers vs. Cubs

Jason Lake

Wednesday, June 1, 2016 11:27 AM UTC

Wednesday, Jun. 1, 2016 11:27 AM UTC

After losing to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday, the Chicago Cubs are big -180 favorites on the MLB odds board for Wednesday's rematch. Does Chicago have any value?

Every once in a while, from time to time, the Chicago Cubs will lose a baseball game. Tuesday night was one of those times. Jake Arietta gave the Cubs seven shutout innings against the Los Angeles Dodgers (+192 away), but Chicago managed just one hit off Scott Kazmir, and the bullpen imploded in a 5-0 defeat. See, underdogs do pay off. Every once in a while.

The Dodgers are +165 underdogs on the MLB odds board for Wednesday's featured matchup (8:00 p.m. ET, ESPN) at Wrigley Field, but they might not be the right pick this time. That's because they've got Mike Bolsinger (5.01 FIP) making just his third start of the season after suffering a strained oblique in spring training. Jon Lester (3.34 FIP) replies for the Cubs. Will they get their revenge in Game 3 of this four-game series?


Chicago's chances are pretty good. FiveThirtyEight projects them to win Wednesday's game 55 percent of the time, which works out to –186 on our sweet, sweet SBR Betting Odds Converter. Really, you should try it sometime. Plug in 35 percent for L.A., and you get +186, which proves it works – and tells us the Dodgers (28-25, –4.03 units) are overvalued in this situation.

If the projection is any good, that is. Bolsinger is a bit of a wild card here; after posting a 3.91 FIP in 21 starts for the Dodgers last year, the 28-year-old righty fell out of their rotation when they picked up Kazmir and Kenta Maeda during the offseason. Then Bolsinger was demoted to the minors after getting hurt this spring. The Dodgers need him now, though, after injuries to starting pitchers Hyun-Jin Ryu and Alex Wood.

The Cubs (35-15, +9.12 units) don't have much of a body of work against Bolsinger, but current hitters on the team are a combined 6-of-20 for a .791 OPS. That's slightly above their team .788 OPS on the season thus far. It's also well above the .670 OPS the Dodgers have managed off Lester over the years. Will this be enough to keep the home team in our MLB picks?


Fantasy Corner
Sure. In the meantime, may we once again recommend a Cubs reliever for your fantasy team? If your league has a category for holds, that is. Pedro Strop (2.31 FIP) just got his 10th hold of the season in Monday's 2-0 win over the Dodgers, and he's only owned in 6.1 percent of ESPN leagues as we go to press. Strop should be ready to go after taking Tuesday night off. The Cubs should be ready, too. They'll want to wash the taste of Tuesday's loss out of their mouths and get back on the winning track at L.A.'s expense.

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Free MLB Pick: Cubs -179
Best Line Offered: at Heritage
Record: 9-10 ML, 2-0 Totals (+1.29 units)

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