Chicago Cubs vs Washington Nationals 5/18/19: Starting Lineups, Matchup Preview, Betting Odds

TV Section

Chicago Cubs vs. Washington Nationals, 5/17/19 7:15 PM ET Nationals Park, Washington, DC, TV: Washington (FOX), Chicago (FOX) – Radio: Washington (106.7 The Fan), Chicago (670 The Score)

Matchup Preview

Following last night’s blowout win for the Cubs, the two teams are set to matchup up again today at 7:15 PM ET. Last night’s game was an offensive fan’s dream with 31 hits total between the two clubs — 18 belonging to the Cubs, 13 to the Nationals.

The Cubs’ Jon Lester will be sent to bump for the team tonight. Since coming off the injured list, he’s thrown 24 2/3 innings, boasting an ERA of 0.36 with 25 strikeouts. Strasburg is set to take the start for the Nationals, 3-3 on the season with an ERA of 3.36 and 75 K’s.

As we know in the elusive game of baseball, yesterday’s game means close to nothing as today is a fresh start. The Nationals look to get back on track with the 2 game win streak they had going into last night’s game so as not to lose hope in the NL East. The Cubs are hoping to grab a second in a row to pull further ahead in the lead of the Central.

Cubs Starting Lineup

1. K. Schwarber , LF
2. K. Bryant , 3B
3. A. Rizzo , 1B
4. J. Baez , SS
5. W. Contreras , C
6. D. Descalso , 2B
7. J. Heyward , RF
8. A. Almora Jr. , CF
9. J. Lester , SP

Cubs Analysis

chicago cubs6 home runs. Yes, you read the correctly. Between Schwarber, Contreras, Almora, and Bryant the Cubs went long 6 times last night. Bryant accounts for 3 of those as the former NL MVP looks to be getting back to that MVP level of play. In the last 19 games, Bryant has been hitting .328 with 10 home runs, 23 RBIs, 16 walks and only 14 strikeouts. Following a slow start to the season, he looks to be exactly where he and the Cubs had hoped he’d be.

Any team that puts up 18 hits in a 14-6 victory is bound to be doing something right. 5 Cubs hitters are hitting above .300 in their last 7 games. Although Strasburg is an intimidating name, Bryant, Descalso, and Heyward are all hitting well above .300 against the hard-throwing right hander over their careers.

Despite being on the injured list earlier in the season, Lester has had a great year over 7 starts. His 1.16 ERA over 7 games is certainly something to be factored into tonight’s game, as it feels like a big enough sample size to see how he’ll be pitching this season. In his career against Washington, the lefty is 2-2.

Nationals Starting Lineup

1. T. Turner , SS
2. V. Robles , CF
3. A. Rendon , 3B
4. H. Kendrick , 1B
5. J. Soto , LF
6. K. Suzuki , C
7. B. Dozier , 2B
8. M. Taylor , RF
9. S. Strasburg , SP

Nationals Analysis

washington nationalsEven though the Nationals haven’t had the start to the season (or the series) they were looking for, they can still turn things around. I’ll say it again: losing Harper in the off-season was a blow, certainly, but it doesn’t have to define the team. With players like Kendrick and Rendon, there’s no reason this Nationals team couldn’t pull together to have a shot in the East.

The Nationals have stacked their lineup with righties for tonight’s game to face Lester. Although that might help them get a little edge, Lester has still held lefties to a .234 average on the year. Dozier, Kendrick, and Soto were all productive at the plate last night, all having multiple hits.

In lieu of his slow start to the season, Strasburg has put up a 2.36 ERA with 47 strikeouts over his last 5 starts. For every Cub that hits the right-hander well, there’s a Cub that struggles immensely off him — notably Baez and Contreras.

Cubs vs Nationals Betting Odds

The line is currently set at Cubs +113 Nationals -113. Granted I don’t know everything that goes into Vegas setting their lines, I still don’t see how you could pass on Cubs +113 given their monstrous offensive performance last night and Lester on the mound.

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After suffering a career ending injury as a high school freshman B-team quarterback, Emmett has completely devoted himself to sports fandom. A Chicago (suburb) native, he is loyal to all his teams. He is currently a junior at Chapman University in Southern California and thoroughly enjoys Microsoft Excel.

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