This game could be low scoring as Gerrit Cole (2-2, 2.78 ERA) and the Pittsburgh Pirates (15-10) go up against Jason Hammel (3-0, 0.75 ERA) and the Chicago Cubs (17-6) in the first of a three-game series at PNC Park. The game starts at 7:05 p.m. ET on Monday, May. 2 and will air on CSCh, RTPT and ESPN.
In his last start, Cole pitched 6.0 innings, giving up four runs (two unearned), striking out three and walking two in a 9-4 victory over the Rockies. Gregory Polanco (.315, 18 Rs, 3 HRs, 15 RBIs, 2 SBs) continued his strong season yesterday, going 2 for 3 with one run, one home run, and one RBI. The Cubs were victorious over the Reds 9-0 the last time Hammel pitched. He went 6.0 innings, allowing zero runs, striking out seven and walking two. Dexter Fowler (.350, 20 Rs, 3 HRs, 15 RBIs, 3 SBs) has been hitting the ball well, going 2 for 5 yesterday with one run and one stolen base.
The odds are Pittsburgh -115 for this game and the Over/Under (O/U) is presently 7.
Predictions: SU Winner - CHC
The Pirates and the Cubs hold winning records against the NL Central Division this season. The Pirates sit at 8-4 and the Cubs have a 10-2 record.
Pittsburgh recorded at least two errors for the fourth time this season.
The Pirates managed to give up five walks in their last game. They'll have to pick it up against the Cubs who are coming in with a 14-1 record against opponents who give up that many walks or more.
When they are outhit, the Pirates are 2-6. The Cubs have a 2-5 record when opponents outhit them.
Ranking 16th in home runs, Pittsburgh has hit 24 this season. Chicago ranks 11th with 28 home runs.
Pittsburgh ranks at the top of the league when it comes to hits with 10.36 per game this season. Chicago ranks in the top half at 13th with 8.39.
Ranking seventh, Chicago is in the top 10 of the league for its on-base plus slugging percentage (.783). Pittsburgh ranks in the top five at fourth with an OPS of .824.
The Cubs are 6-3 in games where they allow one or more home runs. The Pirates are 8-9 when they allow at least one homer.