One of the hottest teams in baseball faces one of the biggest disappointments this week as the Cubs visit the Mets. In the 2nd game of the series, two underperforming veteran pitchers take the mound with Jameson Taillon starting for the Cubs and Carlos Carrasco for the Mets.
The Cubs are the betting favorites at -130 on the moneyline while the over/under is set at 9 runs. The prediction here is that the Cubs win and the over hits.
Cubs vs Mets Prediction
Starting pitchers: RHP Jameson Taillon (6-6, 5.36 ERA) vs. RHP Carlos Carrasco (3-6, 6.60 ERA)
Like just about everyone else on the Cubs, Jameson Taillon has looked much better over the last month than he did for most of the season.
Taillon carried a 6.90 ERA and 1.55 WHIP entering July, but in 6 starts since then he is 4-0 with a 2.80 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. He has been a big part of the Cubs going 20-12 since July 1 and moving from 7 games back of the final NL Wild Card spot on July 3 to being entrenched in that spot as of Monday morning.
Of course the bigger reason for that is the red-hot offense. Since July 1 the Cubs have scored 26 more runs than the next closest team (Dodgers). They are 3rd in average (.275), 4th in OPS (.814) and 6th in wRC+ over that span.
Now they face a Mets pitcher in Carlos Carrasco who currently has his highest ERA since 2013. Over his last 4 starts that ERA is a whopping 12.33 while his WHIP is 2.48.
Entering Monday’s game, the Cubs have won 13 of their last 16 games and just took 2 out of 3 against the best team in the league, Atlanta. The Mets have lost 6 in a row.
Considering those recent performances, getting the Cubs for -130 on the moneyline feels like a steal. But the bet we like even more is Cubs -1 at +130 odds. Laying 1 run is worth it to flip the odds from -130 to +130.
If the Cubs continue to rake offensively, which seems likely against Carrasco, then the over on 9 runs also looks like a good bet.
Cubs vs Mets Prediction: Cubs -1 (+130), Over 9 runs (-120)
Note: all metrics above taken before Monday’s games
Cubs vs Mets Odds
The Cubs are the betting favorites at -130 on the moneyline, while the Mets are home underdogs with +110 odds.
The Cubs are laying -1 runs on the spread at +130 odds, while the Mets are getting +1 at -155 odds.
The over/under for this game is set at 9 runs with -120 odds on the over and +100 on the under.
Cubs vs Mets Key Matchups
Here are the key matchups that could decide Cubs vs Mets.
Cubs’ hot bats vs. Carlos Carrasco
The biggest reason for picking Cubs -1 in our Cubs vs. Mets prediction is the Cubs’ red-hot bats. A close 2nd is Carrasco’s recent struggles. If both of those trends continue, then both the spread and over/under predictions will be looking very safe.
During their hot stretch, the Cubs have been especially dangerous against righties. Since July 1 they are 1st in average (.285), 2nd in OPS (.844) and tied for 1st in wRC+ (130) against righties.
Cody Bellinger has been the Cubs’ best hitter over this stretch. He is batting .410 with a 1.153 OPS against righties since July 1, and .415 with a 1.144 OPS overall. His at-bats against Carrasco will be the most important in this game.
The Cubs also have the edge in the bullpen against New York, who are sorely missing closer Edwin Diaz. The Mets are 22nd in the league with a 4.28 bullpen ERA while the Cubs are 14th at 3.92. Since July 1, the Cubs have improved to 3.64 (9th) while the Mets are at 4.29 (14th).
Chicago has converted on 68.9% of its save opportunities (20-for-29) while the Mets have closed out games on 64.1% of opportunities (25-for-39). However, the Mets traded away closer David Robertson (14-for-17, 2.05 ERA) at the deadline, creating a gaping hole at the back end of their bullpen.
If the Cubs’ bats take care of business as expected, they have the relief arms to provide confidence they will preserve a lead enough to cover a -1 spread. Even if they don’t, with the state of the Mets’ bullpen, Chicago has a good chance to pull things out late.
Cubs vs Mets Starting Lineups (Projected)
Cubs Starting Lineup
2B Nico Hoerner (R)
RF Seiya Suzuki (R)
LF Ian Happ (S)
CF Cody Bellinger (L)
3B Jeimer Candelario (S)
SS Dansby Swanson (R)
C Yan Gomes (R)
DH Christopher Morel (R)
1B Trey Mancini (R)
Mets Starting Lineup
CF Brandon Nimmo (L)
LF Starling Marte (R)
SS Francisco Lindor (S)
1B Pete Alonso (R)
DH Mark Vientos (R)
RF Jeff McNeil (L)
C Francisco Alvarez (R)
3B Brett Baty (L)
2b Danny Mendick (R)