Mike Montgomery (4-5, 2.41 ERA) takes the hill for the Chicago Cubs (81-45) as they square off against Bud Norris (6-10, 4.69 ERA) and the Los Angeles Dodgers (71-56) in the first of a three-game series at Dodger Stadium. Action begins at 10:10 p.m. ET on Friday, Aug. 26 and can be seen on WLS and SNLA.
Norris pitched 0.2 inning in his most recent start, surrendering one run and walking one in an 18-9 win over the Reds. Corey Seager (.322, 86 Rs, 22 HRs, 61 RBIs, 1 SB) went 1 for 3 yesterday. Montgomery went 4.1 innings, surrendering one run, striking out five and walking two in a 9-2 win over the Rockies in his last outing. Kris Bryant (.301, 104 Rs, 33 HRs, 86 RBIs, 8 SBs) has been successful at the plate for the Cubs, going 2 for 4 Wednesday with two runs.
Los Angeles is a slim -108 favorite at home against Chicago. The matchup has an estimated Over/Under (O/U) of eight runs. Though the Dodgers have had a tough season in terms of their overall money line (-354), they have done fairly well as a favorite with a record of 63-37. The Dodgers have seen an uptick in scoring as of late, averaging 6.1 runs during the last 10 games compared to their season average of 4.5 runs per game. Los Angeles's pitching staff has been doing poorly against opposing offenses during the last 10 games, allowing an average of 5.0 runs per game, well above its season average of 4.0. The Dodgers are the second-best team in the league at limiting hits and walks to their opponents, recording a WHIP of 1.185 so far this season. Opponents have consistently been struck out by the Dodgers, who lead the NL in strikeouts per game with 9.2.
As for their opponent, in contrast to an encouraging overall money line (+321), Chicago has an unimpressive 5-8 record when playing as the underdog. The Cubs allow just 3.4 runs per game, ranking them first in the NL. When it comes to preventing batters from getting on base, the Cubs are the best in the league with a WHIP of 1.118 for the season.
The Cubs lead the season series, 3-1. The Dodgers have a 15-16 record against left-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Montgomery takes the mound. Norris (RHP) will be on the hill against the Cubs, who have a very good 54-32 record against right-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - CHC, O/U - Over
Chi Cubs are 19-4 SU in their last 23 games.
Chi Cubs are 4-1 SU in their last 5 games on the road.
The total has gone UNDER in 10 of Chi Cubs's last 11 games when playing LA Dodgers.
Chi Cubs are 4-1 SU in their last 5 games when playing LA Dodgers.
Chi Cubs are 4-8 SU in their last 12 games when playing on the road against LA Dodgers.
Los Angeles has won 56% (27-21) of its games when leading after seven innings. However, Chicago has won 67% (43-21) of its games when taking a late lead.
The Cubs are coming off of a hot pitching game where they recorded 14 strikeouts. The Dodgers have a record of 1-2 when they are struck out that many times or more.
When they outhit their opponents, the Dodgers are 52-15. The Cubs have a 69-13 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 14th, Los Angeles is in the top half of the league in runs, scoring 577 this season. Chicago ranks in the top five at third with 647.
Ranking first in walks, Chicago has earned 510 this season. Los Angeles ranks ninth with 414 walks.
When the Dodgers hit at least one home run, they are 55-28, well-matched with the Cubs who are 60-24 when hitting one or more homers.