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Cubs vs. Dodgers MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Betting Value on Total (Thursday, July 7)

Cubs vs. Dodgers MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Betting Value on Total (Thursday, July 7) article feature image

Todd Kirkland/Getty Images. Pictured: Tony Gonsolin.

  • The Chicago Cubs travel to the West Coast to take on the Los Angeles Dodgers on Thursday night.
  • The Dodgers send Tony Gonsolin to the mound and his dominant performances thus far could lead the way to a low-scoring game.
  • Kenny Ducey breaks down Cubs vs. Dodgers and shares his best bet below.

Cubs vs. Dodgers Odds

Cubs Odds+225
Dodgers Odds-280
Over/Under8.5 (+100 / -120)
Time10:10 p.m. ET
Odds via PointsBet. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Something’s got to give in Los Angeles on Thursday night as two of the hottest teams in the National League come together to start a weekend set.

With a pitching matchup that’s heavily skewed toward the home team, it’s no surprise to see it enter as heavy favorites. Let’s break down the action.

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Can Cubs Keep Up?

When I say this pitching matchup is lopsided, it’s probably a bit unfair. Mark Leiter Jr. — the man who will get the ball for Chicago on Thursday — has done nothing but calm himself down after giving up seven earned runs in his first start of the season against Colorado.

It’s more of a testament to how good Tony Gonsolin has been on the other side of things.

Leiter has primarily been pitching out of the bullpen ever since then, but in his last start, he was stretched out to 5 1/3 innings. He faced a pesky Red Sox team and yielded just a run on three hits with five strikeouts — a sign that things could be turning around.

While his walk rate still stands at 10.4% for the year, Leiter has at least pitched to a 4.01 xERA, which would classify him as a firmly average pitcher.

In terms of the offense, it’s once again come alive for the Cubs. They rank fifth in wRC+ over the last two weeks, and while they do carry a 24.6% strikeout rate, they’re rocking a 9.9% walk rate during that time to get plenty of traffic on the basepaths.

Tony Gonsolin Continues to Roll

Speaking of those last two weeks, they’ve gone well for Los Angeles. The Dodgers rank third in wRC+, own a spicy .204 ISO and have racked up seven wins in their last eight.

All of this has come in spite of a low 8.7% walk rate and high 25.4% strikeout rate. But with the kind of power this team has boasted in the last two weeks, it really hasn’t seemed to matter.

You could also probably win this game with one run the way Gonsolin has pitched this year. The righty owns a 1.54 ERA with a stellar 2.81 xERA, sporting a very low 30.1% hard-hit rate and a low .332 xwOBA on contact. He’s missed plenty of bats with a 24.9% strikeout rate, and the balls that have come back in play have been hit weakly.

Gonsolin has yet to face the Cubs this year, but he’s done well against all competition levels. He’s fresh off of a one-run outing that took him 7 2/3 innings in San Diego last time out, and he’s now struck out five or more hitters in all but one of his last 12 starts.

Cubs-Dodgers Pick

Here’s the thing — Gonsolin has been punching out hitters like crazy, and the Cubs have been striking out like crazy.

On top of that, the Dodgers’ righty has been excellent at keeping the ball in the yard or away from the gaps. Meanwhile, the Cubs have done next to nothing in the power department.

Leiter has also been a bit better than we remember from his disaster of a season debut, which would lead me to believe this game could come in under the total.

Los Angeles has been striking out too much of late to put together a big night against the Cubs’ righty.

Pick: Under 8.5 (-114)

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