Cubs Can Use a Win Against Nationals

Nationals Baseball

Cubs Have Work to Do Against Nationals

It looks like the Chicago Cubs (82-57, +03.90 betting units) will win the NL Central again. Nothing is etched in stone with a month left. A win Thursday over the Washington Nationals (69-71, -20.98 units) would be most welcome indeed.

TV: 7:05 p.m. ET, MLB Network, NBCS Chicago, MASN (Washington)

Odds: Nationals are -110-moneyline favorites. The total is 8.5 Under -115.

PITCHING MATCHUP: Cubs RH Kyle Hendricks (11-10, 3.77 ERA) vs. Nationals RH Stephen Strasbourg (7-7, 4.09)

Going into the season, this weekend’s series looked like it would be a pivotal one between pennant contenders. It turns out it’s a big one for the Cubs. The Nationals are barely clinging to their slim postseason hopes as the series begins.

The Cubs hold the best record in the National League. They have a four-game lead over Milwaukee in the NL Central after a 6-4 win over the Brewers on Wednesday. Chicago has won 11 of its last 15 overall and took two of three from Washington last month.

It helped to help sink the Nationals’ playoff hopes. Washington has lost five of its last seven to fall two games below .500. They are 7 1/2 games behind Atlanta in the NL East. The Nationals dropped the finale of their three-game series against visiting St. Louis 7-6 despite 16 hits Wednesday.

Cubs Have Slim Lead Over Brewers

Kyle Hendricks is on the mound for the Cubs. They try to increase their four-game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers in a tight NL Central race. The St. Louis Cardinals are 4.5 games behind.

Hendricks has pitched well this year. He’s down 9.06 units on a team record of 14-14, with the Under at 19-9. On the bright side, Chicago’s recent bullpen improvements have helped the Cubs win six of Hendrick’s last seven starts.

Hendricks has posted three straight quality starts. He has allowed three runs over 20 innings during that stretch. He held Philadelphia to one run over six frames in a win last time out. Hendricks tossed seven scoreless innings to beat Cincinnati in his previous start.

Hendricks is 2-2 with a 2.72 ERA in six career starts against the Nationals.

Kyle Schwarber hit his 25th home run Wednesday. He joins Anthony Rizzo and Billy Williams as the club’s only left-handed hitters with multiple 25-homer seasons before age 26.

Strasburg is Still a Primadonna

Washington will go with Stephen Strasburg tonight. Strasburg has pitched better than his pedestrian ERA would indicate. He’s still not his usual All-Star self this year. The Nats have dropped eight of his 17 starts for a loss of 3.50 units.

The Over is 11-6 when Strasburg takes the mound, spurred in part by one of the worst bullpens in baseball.

Strasburg struggled in his return from the disabled list Aug. 22. He has pitched better his last two times out. The 30-year-old didn’t get a decision Saturday against Milwaukee. He held a potent Brewers lineup to two runs over six innings for his second straight quality start.

Strasburg is 1-1 with a 2.08 ERA in five regular-season starts against the Cubs.

Trea Turner (11-for-31) and OF Adam Eaton (11-for-34) are riding seven-game hitting streaks.

PREDICTION: Cubs 5, Nationals 4


Recent Form

Teamrecordmoneyvs LHPvs RHPFaveDogO/UDiff
Chi Cubs82-57$390.0019-1163-4673-419-1661-74-40.82
Pitchers Last 3 Starts

K Hendricks (11-10) ERA: 3.77

event dateOpponentResultscoreOU Resultipmoney
Sep 1, 2018PHIW7-1U6$79.00
Aug 26, 2018CINW9-0U7$38.00
Aug 21, 2018DETL1-2U7-$100.00

S Strasburg (7-7) ERA: 4.09

event dateOpponentResultscoreOU Resultipmoney
Sep 1, 2018MILW5-4O6$79.00
Aug 27, 2018PHIW5-3U6$88.00
Aug 22, 2018PHIW8-7O4$67.00


Chi Cubs’s relievers have pitched 9 innings in the last 3 games.
Washington’s relievers have pitched 11 innings in the last 3 games.
Pitcher Recent Starts Vs Opponent

Chicago Cubs – K Hendricks

DatescoreWinneriphitsRunsEarned RunswalksstrikeoutsDecision
Aug 10, 20183-2CHC682205No Decision
Oct 12, 20179-8CHC494417No Decision
Oct 6, 20173-0CHC720036Win
Aug 4, 20174-2WSH753325Loss
Jun 13, 20164-1WSH5.164344Loss

Washington Nationals – S Strasburg

DatescoreWinneriphitsRunsEarned RunswalksstrikeoutsDecision
Oct 11, 20175-0WSH7300212Win
Oct 6, 20173-0CHC7320110Loss
Jun 28, 20178-4WSH7432113Win
Jun 15, 20165-4WSH761118No Decision
Aug 22, 20135-4WSH8.274428No Decision


Away Team Overall Scoring vs Home Team Overall Defense4.8154.1812
Away Team Away Scoring vs Home Team Home Defense4.5994.5421
Home Team Overall Scoring vs Away Team Overall Defense4.64123.996
Home Team Home Scoring vs Away Team Road Defense4.9073.492

Head To Head Detail

DateAwayaway scoreHomehome scorelineO/UAway PitcherHome PitcherAway HitsHome HitsAway WalksHome WalksAway StrikeoutsHome Strikeouts
Aug 12, 2018WSH3CHC41277.5UMax Scherzer (R)Cole Hamels (L)36311211
Ag 11, 2018WSH9CHC4-1359OTanner Roark (R)Jon Lester (L)131152128
Aug 10, 2018WSH2CHC3-1398.5UJeremy Hellickson (R)Kyle Hendricks (R)942685
Oct 12, 2017CHC9WSH81087.5OKyle Hendricks (R)Gio Gonzalez (L)91469912
Ot 11, 2017WSH5CHC0-1047UStephen Strasburg (R)Jake Arrieta (R)5393714
Oct 9, 2017WSH1CHC21007.5UMax Scherzer (R)Jose Quintana (L)341498
Ot 7, 2017CHC3WSH6-1188.5OJon Lester (L)Gio Gonzalez (L)663384
Oct 6, 2017CHC3WSH0-1457.5UKyle Hendricks (R)Stephen Strasburg (R)5223139
Aug 6, 2017WSH9CHC4-1929.5OErick Fedde (R)Jon Lester (L)1010241110
Aug 5, 2017WSH4CHC7-16211PEdwin Jackson (R)John Lackey (R)7952914

MLB Betting Odds and Trends

Team Vs Division Or Conference

Chicago Cubs

recordHomeAwayFaveDogO/Uvs LHPvs RHP
Last 106-42-14-34-23-16-40-26-2
vs Div34-2918-816-2134-192-926-34-33-131-28
vs AL11-67-34-310-41-28-93-08-6
vs NL71-5137-2134-3063-3512-1553-65-416-1155-40

Washington Nationals

recordHomeAwayFaveDogO/Uvs LHPvs RHP
Last 105-52-43-14-31-27-31-04-5
vs Div31-3016-1415-1628-233-731-26-47-624-24
vs AL9-115-54-66-73-46-141-48-7
vs NL60-6030-3030-3051-459-1557-59-413-1947-41
Team Last 5 Games

Chicago Cubs

DateOpponentscoreResultlineTotalstarteripopposing starterLocation
Sep 5, 2018MIL6-4W-1038.5J Quintana6.2J ChacinA
Sep 4, 2018MIL1-11L-1059Mike Montgomery4W MileyA
Sep 3, 2018MIL3-4L-1218.5C Hamels6Zach DaviesA
Sep 2, 2018PHI8-1W1178J Lester6Aaron NolaA
Sep 1, 2018PHI7-1W-1269K Hendricks6Zach EflinA

Washington Nationals

DateOpponentscoreResultlineTotalstarteripopposing starterLocation
Sep 5, 2018STL6-7L-1139T Roark5M MikolasH
Sep 4, 2018STL8-11L-1229.5Erick Fedde5John GantH
Sep 3, 2018STL4-3W-1907.5M Scherzer7Jack FlahertyH
Sep 2, 2018MIL4-9L1019.5Jefry Rodriguez4.2Junior GuerraH
Sep 1, 2018MIL5-4W-1278.5S Strasburg6C AndersonH

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