MLB Betting: NL Central Battle – Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Chicago Cubs

The Pittsburgh Pirates will host the Chicago Cubs for game 2 of their 3 game series at PNC Park on Tuesday night. The Cubs won the Memorial Day series opener by a score of 7-0. The Pirates have now lost their previous 3 games, while the Cubs have now won the last two.

Both the Cubs and Pirates find themselves in the middle of a very tight NL Central divisional race. The Cubs trail the Brewers by 4.5 games while the Pirates are in 4th place, but just 6 games out of first. The National League Central Division is one of the best divisions in all of baseball. The Chicago Cubs are -113 over the Pirates on Tuesday night.

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Cubs Look to Stay Hot

The Cubs got off to another slow start this season, but it appears as if they are starting to hit their stride. The Cubs offense exploded for 7 runs on 12 hits in the series opener, and some of their big guns are starting to get hot. Anthony Rizzo had three hits in game 1, while driving in 3 runs. Rizzo now has his batting average up to .228 on the season.

Veteran Jon Lester will get the start for the Cubs in game 2 of the series. Lester is having another great season and is 4-2 with a 2.37 ERA so far for the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs have pitched extremely well all season, and come in ranked 4th in team ERA with a 3.37 staff ERA.

Pirates Offense Struggles in Series Opener

The Pirates feature a very talented lineup, but they were unable to get anything going in the series opener. The Pirates managed just two hits against Cubs’ starter Mike Montgomery. The Pirates are ranked 6th in runs (249) and 7th in batting average (.257) so far this season. Journeyman, Corey Dickerson has been the offensive star so far this season for the Pirates.

Nick Kingham will get the start for the Pirates in game 2, as he will be filling in for Ivan Nova, who was placed on the disabled list. The rookie right hander will be making his fourth start of his career on Tuesday night against the Cubs. The Pirates got off to a very surprising start in 2018, but it appears that they are starting to fall off the pace in the NL Central.

Lester, Cubs, Win Game 2

The Cubs traditionally get better as the year goes on, and it appears that they are primed to make another run at the NL Central title. Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo love hitting off Pirates pitching, and they will look to do damage against the rookie, Kingham.

The Pirates have a terrific offense, but have struggled with pitching so far in 2018. Their staff ERA is 4.09 on the season which ranks 15th in all of baseball. The loss of Ivan Nova doesn’t help matters and they hope that Kingham can hold down the prolific Cubs offense in game 2. Look for Jon Lester to pitch deep into the game, and the Cubs offense to stay hot in winning their 3rd game in a row. Bet the Chicago Cubs -113 over the Pirates in game 2.

  • Bet the Chicago Cubs -113
  • Bet on the Pittsburgh Pirates +103
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