The Chicago Cubs and the St. Louis Cardinals are set to wrap up a four-game series in Major League Baseball on Thursday night at Busch Stadium. This has been a wildly entertaining series up to this point, but it has also been a series that has been played poorly.
Chicago was able to put together an impressive comeback victory on Tuesday night, but that is their only win of the series. The Cubs come into Thursday night with a record of 47-49, and they are not going to be able to turn their season around and be a playoff contender.
St. Louis is now 48-48 on the year, but this has been a disappointing season for the Cardinals as well. The Cardinals were expected to win the NL Central Division this season, but they are still 7.5 games out of first place at the moment.
The St. Louis Cardinals are the betting favorite at -130 in the series finale against the Chicago Cubs.
Cubs at Cardinals Preview and Pick: Cubs Not Taking Advantage
The Cubs had baserunners on in seemingly every single inning on Wednesday night, but they just couldn’t come up with the big hit when they needed it. St. Louis has really struggled to get outs with the bullpen, but the Cubs just weren’t able to cash in with a big hit.
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Kris Bryant is currently out of the lineup with hamstring fatigue, and that takes one of the biggest bats away from the Cubs. Javier Baez has been hitting well in this series, but Anthony Rizzo continues to struggle.
Adbert Alzolay starts for the Cubs on Thursday night, and he has gone just 4-9 with a 4.59 ERA. Alzolay has pitched much better than that at times this season, but the Cubs need him to put together a full game in the series finale.
Cubs at Cardinals Preview and Pick: Pitching a Mess For the Cards
The lack of offense continues to be a big story for the Cardinals, but the pitching staff has been an even bigger issue since the All-Star Break. St. Louis blew a five-run ninth-inning lead on Tuesday night, and they hit five batters on Wednesday.
Kwang Hyun Kim is set to start for the Cardinals on Thursday night, and he has been extremely inconsistent on the mound this season. The left-hander has gone 5-5 with an impressive ERA under 3.00, but he has also had some very bad starts.
Yadier Molina delivered the game-winning double on Wednesday night, but it hasn’t been a great season for many of the Cardinals’ top hitters. Nolan Arenado leads the team with 18 home runs and 57 RBIs, and he has produced this series so far.
Cubs at Cardinals Preview and Pick
These two teams are pretty evenly matched, and that has been evident in the previous two games of this series. Both teams are still looking to find a way to play better this season, but they have at least been extremely competitive in this series.
Both starting pitchers have been inconsistent this season, but Alzolay appears to have a brighter future. Alzolay is going to be the best pitcher on the mound on Thursday night, and that will get the Cubs off on the right foot.
Expect this to be the highest-scoring game of the series, and there will be plenty of offense. The Cubs are going to break out the big bats finally, and they will be able to hold off a late rally by the Cardinals.
Bet the Chicago Cubs money line as they are able to pick up a win in the series finale to split this four-game series against their bitter rival.