Jake Arrieta (4-4, 2.95 ERA) and the Chicago Cubs (25-21) square off against Edinson Volquez (4-3, 2.77 ERA) and the Kansas City Royals (28-18) in a game that has the potential to be low scoring. This is the first of a three-game series at Wrigley Field. Action begins at 4:05 p.m. ET on Friday, May. 29 and can be seen on CSN-CHI and FSN-KC.
Arrieta is 2-0 with a 3.12 ERA in his appearances against the Royals, but goes up against a quality Kansas City offense which is batting .281 this season. Anthony Rizzo (.315, 27 Rs, 9 HRs, 29 RBIs, 9 SBs) went 1 for 3 Wednesday. Against the Cubs, Volquez is 7-0 with a 2.90 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, and 51 strikeouts. Kendrys Morales (.306, 32 Rs, 6 HRs, 37 RBIs) has been successful at the plate for the Royals, going 2 for 4 Wednesday.
The odds for Chicago and Kansas City are even, while the Over/Under (O/U) is unavailable as of now. Against the AL, the Cubs have a 25-21 record SU. The Cubs have seen a decline in scoring as of late, averaging 2.9 runs during the last 10 games compared to their season average of 4.1 runs per game. Chicago is one of the best in the MLB in terms of steals, swiping 43 bases. As for the pitchers, the Cubs are the fifth-best team in the league at limiting hits and walks to their opponents, recording a WHIP of 1.20 so far this season.
Kansas City is 4-1 SU against National League opponents. Offensively, the Royals have really sputtered in the last 10 games. They have decreased their season average of 4.7 runs per game by averaging 3.0 during that stretch. Kansas City's pitching staff is one of the top in the AL, with a 3.52 ERA.
The Cubs have a 21-18 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Volquez takes the mound. Arrieta (RHP) will be on the hill against the Royals, who have an 18-13 record against right-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - KC
Chicago recorded at least two errors for the 13th time this season.
When the Royals play into extra innings, they have a 3-0 record. The Cubs are 5-2 when their games exceed nine innings.
The Royals are coming off of a hot pitching game where they recorded nine strikeouts. The Cubs have a record of 13-15 when they are struck out that many times or more.
When they outhit their opponents, the Cubs are 14-3. The Royals have a 25-4 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 18th in runs, Chicago has earned 189 this season. Kansas City ranks fourth with 215 runs.
Ranking 30th, Kansas City is at the bottom of the league in walks, notching 93 this season. Chicago ranks in the top five at third with 161.
The Cubs are 18-9 when they hit at least one home run. The Royals perform similarly when they hit one or more homers with an 18-8 record.