Chicago Cubs at Washington Nationals
First pitch: 4:05 p.m. PT
Probable pitchers: Cole Hamels (3-0, 3.08 ERA) vs. Max Scherzer (2-4, 3.64 ERA)
It isn’t often bettors have the opportunity to grab an over/under at an even 8 involving Scherzer at home, but that will be the case tonight when the Nationals and Cubs begin a three-game set in our nation’s capital.
Yes, Scherzer’s numbers on the year at the moment are very, well, un-Scherzer like, but that doesn’t mean the three-time Cy Young Award winner isn’t getting closer to his norm.
Scherzer enters this assignment having recorded four straight qualify starts, looking more like the elite pitcher we’re used to seeing. Furthermore, he’s amassed two double-digit strikeout outings within that span — his first two such performances since opening day.
Adding to his cause, Scherzer will see an opponent in this series opener that he’s had success against. In eight starts lifetime against the Cubs, he’s 4-1 with a 2.55 ERA and 0.92 WHIP while notching 73 K’s across 53 total innings. Not only that, Chicago’s “big three” of Javier Baez, Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo is a combined 5-for-35 (.143) with 16 strikeouts opposite the upper echelon right-hander.
Hamels is the other starter in this affair, seeking to simply keep up what has been a very impressive first full campaign with the Cubs for the 14-year veteran.
Like his counterpart, Hamels also has a notable history when dealing with his opponent for this evening, which will certainly be useful considering Washington’s success against left-handed pitching this year.
Hamels is 16-9 in 37 career starts vs. the Nats to go alongside a dandy 2.67 ERA and 1.05 WHIP. In addition, he, too, comes into this showdown in a groove, having not allowed more than three earned runs in any start since his season debut.
It’s a pitching matchup that need not be overthought. One strong showing could be all it takes to keep the scoring minimal. Play: UNDER 8 (-110)
Yesterday’s Result: Orioles-Indians Under 9 (loss)
Zylbert’s 2019 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*: 26-21-2, +2.45 units
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit
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