Cubs vs. Astros Predictions, Odds, Props: Take This Side of Undervalued Total

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MLB on TBS Tuesdays rolls on with an intriguing interleague matchup. The Chicago Cubs will head to the Lonestar state to take on the defending World Series Champion, Houston Astros. These two teams are looking to get back on the right track, and you can get in on the action as we break down the Cubs vs. Astros predictions, odds, and prop bets. 

Read more: MLB MVP odds | Odds to win World Series

Cubs vs. Astros Betting Odds: Run Line, Moneyline, Total

If you want to get a Cubs vs. Astros wager in for tonight’s matchup, check out the odds and lines from some of the top US sports betting apps. This will ensure you get the best numbers for your bets and open you up to each sportsbook’s bonus offers.

Here are the Cubs vs. Astros odds from some of our favorite sports betting platforms.

 

Bet TypeMoneyline
Open

Cubs vs. Astros Betting Trends & Notes

Astros’ World Series Hangover

Entering the seasons as World Series champions, the Houston Astros were projected to once again be one of the top teams in baseball. They did lose a few pieces from last year’s team, but with a core of Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Jeremy Pena, Yordan Alvarez, and a deep rotation, the Astros are still among the most talented rosters in the game.

However, injuries have derailed this team as Altuve broke his hand during the 2023 WBC, and the pitching staff is banged up. This is most notably true for Luis Garcia, who has been shut down for the year for Tommy John surgery.

Simply put, things have not been going great for Houston, as they enter this game 22-19, and they are three games back of the Texas Rangers. Offensively, the Astros rank 19th in runs (177), 20th in BABIP (.289), 27th in wOBA (.300), and 23rd in wRC+ (89). Luckily, Houston’s pitching staff continues to be one of the best in the league. They enter play with a 3.33 team ERA and an fWAR of 6.2.

Cubs’ Offensive Resurgence

Meanwhile, the Cubs’ offseason spending spree has helped to an extent. The Cubs are only 19-22 on the season, but new players like Dansby Swanson and Cody Bellinger have reset the clock for this team, giving them a much larger window of competitiveness. For Bellinger, he is enjoying a much-needed resurgence as he enters tonight’s action with a slash of .271/.337/.493 with a wOBA of .353 and a wRC+ of 122.

Those numbers are far from his 2019 MVP campaign, but Bellinger has looked very comfortable in Chicago. We are starting to see some of the power he showcased for many years in Los Angeles. With Wrigley Field not necessarily being a hitters-ballpark, Bellinger and Swanson have been welcomed additions to this lineup that also features players such as Ian Happ, Patrick Wisdom, and Nico Hoerner.

Pitching-wise, Chicago has gotten good production out of Drew Smyly and Marcus Stroman, but tonight’s starter, Justin Steele, has been the best in the rotation for the Cubs. He enters tonight with a 1.82 ERA in 49.1 IP and has not been giving up many hard hits.

The bullpen, however, has been a mess with a 4.11 ERA and the second-fewest saves (5), just ahead of the Oakland A’s (4).

Chicago Cubs Betting Trends

  • The total has gone OVER in six of Chicago’s last six games
  • Chicago is 2-6 SU in its last eight games
  • The total has gone OVER in four of Chicago’s last five games in Houston
  • Chicago is 2-4 SU in its last six games against Houston

Houston Astros Betting Trends

  • The total has gone UNDER in five of Houston’s last six games
  • Houston is 5-1 SU in its last six games
  • The total has gone over in four of Houston’s last five games against Chicago
  • The total has gone UNDER in five of Houston’s last seven home games

MLB odds: Runlines, moneylines, totals 

Starting Pitchers

Chicago Cubs: Justin Steele

2023 Stats: 8 GS, 49.1 IP, 1.82 ERA 39 K, 1.3 fWAR

The 27-year-old Southpaw has been money for the Cubs since transitioning into a full-time starter last year. He finished the 2022 season with a 3.18 ERA and gave up less hard contact than ever. This may be only his third year in the show, but he has already flashed some elite stuff, and this year is no different.

He enters tonight’s start with a 1.82 ERA and already has an fWAR of 1.3, which is half of what he earned last season. However, his xERA of 3.21 and xFIP of 4.12 point towards regression, and although the Astros lineup has struggled, this team can still make you pay in the heart of the lineup.

Still, Steele has significantly reduced his HR/9, BABIP, and BB/9, indicating that his progression is no fluke.

Houston Astros: Cristian Javier

2023 Stats: 8 GS, 46.2 IP, 3.47 ERA 54 K, 1.1 fWAR

After starting the season slowly, Cristian Javier has really found his groove. Javier had given up eight earned runs in 17.0 IP through his first three starts, and opposing teams carried a .269/.296/.448 slash against the 26-year-old. He is still giving up a lot of hard contact, as his barrel% is up to 11.6% on the season, but he is striking guys out at a high clip, and he ranks in the 90th percentile for chase rate.

The Cubs do not strike out a lot, but they also do not hit the ball hard, and Javier has had back-to-back solid outings with minimal hard contact. He is due for slight regression with an xERA of 4.17, but this is a lineup that Javier can control.

Cubs vs. Astros Predictions, Odds, Props: Take This Side of Undervalued Total
Chicago Cubs’ Dansby Swanson watches his home run during the third inning of the team’s baseball game. (AP Photo/Erin Hooley)

Cubs vs. Astros Prop Bet

Dansby Swanson 2+ Total Bases (+155, FanDuel Sportsbook)

In his first year with Chicago, Swanson carries a slash of .280/.383/.408 with an OPS+ of 118. While his SLG numbers are significantly down, he is getting on base at an impressive clip, and he has fared very well against right-handed pitching this season. 

Swanson is slashing .308/.372/.373 with a .745 OPS against righties. In his last seven games, Swanson has hit this number five times, including in his last two, and carries a slash of .321/.387/.643 with an OPS of 1.030 and a BABIP of .381.

While Javier is one of the best young pitchers in the league, Swanson is red-hot coming into this game. This is a good hitters-park, especially for XBH, giving Swanson a good chance at getting a hold of one and staying hot.

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Cubs vs. Astros Prediction

The Cubs have a top-10 offense in baseball, and they have the best pitcher in the rotation getting the start tonight. While the offensive production takes a slight dip against righties, Chicago’s offense is getting on base and scoring runs, which are the only two things that matter. 

Houston’s offense has struggled this season, but Steele is coming off his worst start and is due for some regression, and the heart of the Astros lineup is still scary to face. With Alvarez, Pena, Kyle Tucker, and Chas McCormick having a wRC+ over 100, Steele will have difficulty limiting the damage against those players. That is especially true for Alvarez, who has mashed lefties this season.

Houston will need to chip in more than they have so far this season, but with two pitchers starting down the barrel of regression and two offenses with a lot of pop, we are leaning this game going over the total. It also helps that the guy calling balls and strikes, David Rackley, has been an over-leaning ump for his entire career.

With a low total, we will take a flyer on both offenses tonight and fade the starting pitching matchup.

Pick: Over 7.5 via FanDuel Sportsbook

How To Watch Cubs vs. Astros

Date: Tuesday, May 16, 2023

First Pitch: 8:10 p.m. ET

Location: Minute Maid Park — Houston, TX

Where to Watch: TBS

About the Author
DJ Corrigan

DJ Corrigan

Writer
DJ Corrigan is a sports betting writer for Gaming Today and has been covering the world of wagering since his days at Ohio State University. Corrigan's love of betting the Over and chasing the hungry dogs has led him to a career crunching numbers with an emphasis on NCAAF, NCAAB, NFL, and MLB betting.

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