Can the Chicago Cubs become division contenders after all those off-season moves? Bettors have taken a close look to MLB odds and certainly this NL team has caught their eye and here's why.
San Diego and the Chicago Cubs took different paths head into the 2015 season, but both are convinced their path is the right one for their organization this definitely got the attention of sportsbooks and MLB baseball handicappers alike.
Chicago Cubs – Projected Win Total 82 wins – 3rd in the NL Central
With all the hoopla about the up and coming Cubs, still at fourth at several sportsbooks versus the MLB betting odds to win the National League, those placing sports picks have been more reasonable if not pessimistic.
On March 1st, Joe Maddon’s club projected win total was 82.5 and that has slid slightly to 82 for those heading to the windows for MLB picks on the North Siders. The Cubs might have the finest young talent arriving piece by piece, but unlike the Padres, a lot of what they have is unproven. Young studs like Javier Baez, Jorge Solar, Arismendy Alcantara, Kris Bryant and Kyle Schwarber are the future of this team along with Anthony Rizzo and presumably Starlin Castro.
However, the other moves in acquiring Jon Lester, Jason Hammel, Miguel Montero and Dexter Fowler gives them a chance to at least post a winning record in this season.
No question the Cubs feel very much like a house of cards, either being something magical or something which could fall apart and the sense is they should be two games on either side of the predicted win total.
Padres vs. Cubs Game Notes
For Cubs fans, it was the same old story in the second inning; Castro misplays a ground ball into an error. Starting pitcher Edwin Jackson takes a one–hopper back at him and turns a double play into an error, tossing the ball 10 feet short of second base and it rolled into the outfield.
Evidently with that still on his mind and Jackson grooves one to Middlebrooks, who mashes the ball on a line about 12 feet off the ground and could have impaled somebody in the lawn seats had they not scattered.
Montero and Mike Olt gave the near sellout crowd something to cheer with home runs and Bryant replaced Olt at third and singled and walked in two plate appearances.