The Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres will do battle late tonight on ESPN+. The two beleaguered NL franchises need to start winning as both are several games below .500. Let’s dive into the betting odds for Monday night’s Cubs-Padres game to make our MLB predictions and identify the best bet. With the Cubs up 2-1 in this series, we’re siding with them to play well in the finale.
Best MLB Cubs-Padres Bet & Prediction: Chicago Can Capture the Series
Odds via FanDuel Sportsbook
Cubs: +144 | Padres: -172
Over 8.5: -120 | Under 8.5: -102
The untrained eye might see this as a potential pitcher’s duel. The Chicago Cubs will start RHP Kyle Hendricks (0-1), who has made only two starts so far after recovering from an injury. He owns a 3.86 ERA thus far after games against the New York Mets and Tampa Bay Rays. The Padres will start a struggling LHP Blake Snell (1-6), whose 4.50 ERA is somehow still better than his awful 5.54 xERA. We may not have the sample size necessary to evaluate Hendricks, but it’s fair to give the Cubs the advantage on the mound.
The Cubs also have an advantage on offense. Chicago ranks 10th in weighted on-base average, or wOBA, at .324, and 13th in expected weighted on-base average, or xwOBA, at .325. San Diego ranks a dismal 23rd in wOBA at .307 and a still-bad 19th in xwOBA at .319. The Padres may have invested heavily in their offense, but neither Manny Machado nor Xander Bogaerts has contributed much this year. They both own individual an xwOBA below the team average of .319. Machado even ranks eighth in the metric at .273.
Some other factors push me toward Chicago as well. The Cubs have excelled against left-handed pitchers like Snell this year — their team OPS of .738 ticks up to .815 against lefties and .765 when they play on the road. The Cubs have gotten out to a slow start offensively in June, but this is a great spot for them to recover. In contrast, the Padres’ team OPS of .694 dips to .671 against righties like Hendricks. Bogaerts owns an individual OPS of .789 against righties and is day-to-day with an injury.
The Cubs should fare well, especially early, with the matchup against a left-handed hurler in Blake Snell. Not having Cody Bellinger will hurt, but the possible absence (and definite limitations) for San Diego’s Xander Bogaerts kind of balances that one out; both players own an xwOBA between .310 and .320. Let’s back the Cubs to win or tie the first five innings at odds of -105 (51.5%) via FanDuel. If you haven’t registered at FanDuel yet, you can get a no-sweat first bet worth up to $1,000!
Best Cubs-Padres MLB Bet: Cubs F5 +0.5 -105 at FanDuel