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Cubs vs. Giants MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Target Total in Late-Night Clash (Friday, July 29)

Cubs vs. Giants MLB Odds, Picks, Predictions: Target Total in Late-Night Clash (Friday, July 29) article feature image
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Rich Schultz/Getty. Pictured: Marcus Stroman.

  • The Giants are favored against the Cubs as they look to build momentum after a big losing streak.
  • Kenny Ducey breaks down the late-night contest.
  • He offers his best bet, which features analysis of the total.

Cubs vs. Giants Odds

Cubs Odds +115
Giants Odds -140
Over/Under 7.5 (-105 / -115)
Time 10:15 p.m. ET
TV Apple TV+
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

Well, it’s finally over. The Giants have snapped a painful seven-game losing streak thanks to a timely win over the Cubs on Thursday night, but the work won’t stop there.

San Francisco has some some real work to do if it can be the contender the front office thinks it is, and it will continue on Friday with Alex Cobb opposite Marcus Stroman.

Can the Giants do the unthinkable and make it two in a row? Let’s look into this matchup.

Stroman Finding a Groove For Cubs

After missing time due to shoulder inflammation, Stroman looks like a changed man.

He’s only allowed two earned runs in his first three starts back, spanning 14 1/3 innings. What’s more, those starts have come against the Dodgers, Mets and Phillies — all teams with plenty of talent up and down the order.

So, what gives? Well, Stroman has struck out 14 in those 14 1/3 innings, including 11 in his last 10 1/3. While he’s walked five, he’s been excellent at pitching to contact.

While that may not make the most sense given his 4.21 xERA, his .264 expected batting average is pretty close to where it was last year, when he finished with a 3.02 ERA, and it’s also just seven points off of his career average.

The most important thing here is that Stroman is rocking a career-best 23.3% strikeout rate, which has made up for his 45.8% hard-hit rate and 7.3% barrel rate — and then some.

In terms of offense, the Cubs still have plenty of it. They rank second in the last week with a 160 wRC+ and 12th in that category over the last two weeks. Their strikeout rate is just 14.9% — an incredibly low number — and they own a .274 ISO. That’s usually a good combination.

Giants Looking For a Pitching Spark

Yes, the Giants did manage to win on Thursday, but things remain quite grim.

They were the beneficiary of a bad error by Patrick Wisdom which brought them three runs, and if not for that they may have wasted a no-hit bid by Alex Wood.

San Francisco struck out 12 times on the night and stranded seven runners. That’s hardly anything new for a team ranked 29th in wRC+ over the last week and which has one of the five worst strikeout rates around during that time at 24.1%.

The Giants will look to lean on pitching again on Friday with Cobb going, though it’s anyone’s guess if they’ll be able to. The journeyman has been one of the most interesting cases in the analytics community given his 4.26 ERA and 2.88 expected ERA, according to Statcast.

Hit probabilities would indicate that Cobb has been unfortunate to have a 4.26 ERA, but the reality is that his defense has lacked and he’s run into numerous teams which know how to win with softly-hit balls. Still, given the right matchup, his .225 expected batting average against and his 22.8% strikeout rate will play.

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Cubs-Giants Pick

I’m loving this game for both pitchers. Stroman has found his form again and he shouldn’t face much of a challenge in the Giants, a team which hasn’t scored more than four runs in a game in the last week and which has scored just eight times in the last four games.

Stroman’s strikeouts should continue to pile up considering the Giants’ swing-and-miss woes, and on the other side Cobb should finally settle in here against a Cubs team which has thrived in the power department.

In defusing that power, Cobb should be able to cruise and get us a late-night under in San Francisco, which always feels like an inevitability.

Pick: Under 7.5 (-105)

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