Three games of MLB at Fenway Park. Four games in Milwaukee. A 3-4 record. That’s what the St. Louis Cardinals have to show for their last week of action, a difficult stretch that ended with them tied atop the National League Central with the Brewers. The Cardinals’ reward? A soft landing spot with three games at home against the Chicago Cubs and then three more vs the Miami Marlins. The Cubs vs Cardinals series odds will be slanted heavily in favor of the hosts. Let’s dive into the details.
Opening Game Information
- Matchup: Cubs (26-44) at Cardinals (40-32)
- Location: Busch Stadium
- Television: Apple TV
Cubs vs Cardinals Probable Starting Pitchers
- Friday: Kyle Hendricks (Cubs) vs. Andre Pallante (Cardinals)
- Saturday: TBD vs Miles Mikolas (Cardinals)
- Sunday: Matt Swarmer (Cubs) vs Jack Flaherty (Cardinals)
Cubs Enter on a Down Note
Fresh off a surprising series win over red-hottlanta, the Chicago Cubs had a chance to gain a four-game split at Pittsburgh, rallying for a late lead in a Thursday matinee. It wasn’t meant to be, however, as the Pirates scored once in the eighth to tie it and another in the 10th to walk off the Cubs, who have dropped 14 of 17.
Perhaps Chicago can take some solace in the rally that erased an early hole and the fact that they scored 21 runs in the last two games after averaging 2.4 over their previous 12.
The up-and-down offense will get a look at rookie Andre Pallante in Friday’s series opener. It takes aim at Miles Mikolas and Jack Flaherty in the next two contests. The Cubs will hope for results at the plate similar to those they had in a five-game set vs the Cardinals earlier this month when they hit .319 with 15 doubles and five homers.
Chicago also left 52 runners on base in that series, a problem for much of the season. Only two teams in baseball have a lower average than the Cubs do with runners in scoring position (.220).
The Chicago Cubs betting odds would tilt a bit more in the favor of the North Siders if they could get a few more big hits here and there.
Cardinals’ Trip Ends in Frustration
All four of the St. Louis Cardinals’ losses on the seven-game road trip were by two runs or fewer, as rallies fell consistently short. The staff had a 4.27 ERA on the trip. It allowed the Brewers to load the bases in three separate innings during Thursday’s 6-4 loss.
“It’s just not competitive,” manager Oliver Marmol said of the struggles on the mound. “You can’t do that in the big leagues. It’s pretty simple.”
The Cardinals do have their big guns at the plate looking good as they return home. Paul Goldschmidt shook off a one-game layoff due to a back injury to go 2-for-5 with a home run, three walks, and four runs scored in the final two games of the Milwaukee set. Player Nolan Arenado, who hit .196 in May, is up to .305 in June after recording multiple hits five times on the trip.
Only four teams in the majors have secured more home wins than St. Louis, which is 21-13 at Busch Stadium – 10-3 in its last 13 games. That’s certainly something to consider when glancing at the St. Louis Cardinals betting odds.
- Nico Hoerner, Cubs SS: 6-for-14 with three RBIs in the series at Pittsburgh.
- Ian Happ, Cubs LF: 8-for-21 with a home run during a six-game hitting streak.
- Nolan Gorman, Cardinals 2B: A two-homer game on Tuesday and a two-hit game on Thursday.
- Zack Thompson, Cardinals RP: One win, one hold, and 5⅔ hitless innings over his last three appearances.
- Willson Contreras, Cubs C: Hitless in 15 at-bats during Pittsburgh series.
- Yan Gomes, Cubs C: 2-for-18 over his last five games.
- Tommy Edman, Cardinals 2B: 2-for-16 with six strikeouts in Milwaukee series.
- Drew VerHagen, Cardinals RP: 12.15 ERA in eight June appearances.
- Cubs RHP Ethan Roberts will undergo Tommy John surgery.
- Cubs LHP Daniel Norris was placed on the 15-day IL on Thursday due to a finger injury.
- Cubs RHP Marcus Stroman (shoulder) threw a bullpen session Wednesday.
- Cubs LHP Drew Smyly (oblique) threw a bullpen session Tuesday.
- Cardinals OF Tyler O’Neill was placed on the IL earlier in the week with a hamstring injury but the team received positive results from imaging and he is expected to return sooner rather than later.
- Cardinals LHP T.J. McFarland was placed in the IL on Wednesday due to COVID.
Cubs vs Cardinals Series Odds Betting Tips
The Cardinals scratched and clawed their way through the road trip. Although the results weren’t entirely there, they return home for the first weekend of summer tied for first, relatively healthy and ready to pounce on their beleaguered rivals.
The Cubs, meanwhile, will be starting the struggling Kyle Hendricks in the opener, rookie Matt Swarmer – who has allowed 11 homers in his first 24⅔ innings in the bigs – in the finale and they have a TBD listing for Saturday.
This has the feel of a big breakout for St. Louis, which has been very good at home of late. Take that into account when analyzing the Cubs vs Cardinals series odds.