Cubs vs Orioles Pick | MLB Odds, Predictions (July 9)

Cubs vs Orioles Pick | MLB Odds, Predictions (July 9) article feature image

Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images. Pictured: Colton Cowser.

Cubs vs. Orioles Odds

Tuesday, July 9
6:35 p.m. ET
Cubs Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
+100o / -122u
Orioles Odds
MoneylineTotalRun Line
+100o / -122u
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Chicago Cubs and Baltimore Orioles open a three-game interleague series on Tuesday night at Camden Yards.

The AL East-leading Orioles have been running well of late as winners of three series in a row. They're starting right-hander Dean Kremer, who's coming off five shutout innings against the Mariners in his last start. The Cubs are in the opposite position as the Orioles, sitting in last place in the NL Central entering Tuesday. They're giving the ball to Jameson Taillon, who owns a 2.99 ERA this season.

Find my MLB betting preview and Cubs vs Orioles pick below.

Check out our MLB Betting Hub for more previews from today's slate.

Chicago Cubs

The Cubs enter play at 42-49, which puts them just one game behind the Reds for last place in the NL Central. We'll see if a strong finish to the first half is the perfect jolt to turn things around.

In a year of very few positives for the Cubs, one bright spot has been the consistency of Jameson Taillon, who sports a 2.99 ERA entering his penultimate start before the All-Star break. If Taillon's ERA holds, it would be the best of his nine-year MLB career — by far.

That begs the question, can Taillon maintain this performance? Well, Taillon's peripherals hint at looming regression. His 3.80 FIP and 4.24 xFIP aren't promising future indicators for a pitcher who's known to have up-and-down stretches.

The story of the Cubs season overall remains the same, and it’s why they sit at the bottom of the NL Central. They have zero offensive consistency, and their two highest-paid players — Dansby Swanson and Cody Bellinger — perpetually underachieve.

Since July 1, the Cubs only have three above-average batters when measured by wRC+ (100 is league average) —  Ian Happ (231), Michael Busch (180) and Seiya Suzuki (131.) The next highest is Bellinger at 93 — no other Cubs batter owns a wRC+ above 50.

The one positive for the Cubs offense is plate discipline as they have the league’s best walk rate. In contrast, they punch out the eighth most in MLB, so expect a lot of three-true outcomes from the Cubs.

It's worth noting Happ, Busch and Bellinger should have favorable matchups in this one, so I could see the Cubs offense putting up some numbers.

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Baltimore Orioles

Entering Tuesday, the Orioles lead the AL East by three games over the Yankees and boast the best record in the American League.

It's the second start back from the injured least for Dean Kremer, who stifled the Mariners for five scoreless innings with eight punchouts in his return on Wednesday. Destroying one of the league's worst offenses isn't a great feat, but the Cubs offense isn't great either.

Regression looms for Kremer — his 5.27 xERA and 2nd percentile barrel rate are causes for concern. The one thing he does well is strike out batters, ranking in the 71st percentile. I think it's possible Seattle made Kremer look better than his actual talent level. The M's tend to do that lately, but the Cubs could do the same.

It's been a dazzling offensive season for the O's in all facets, but they crush right-handed pitchers in particular. They rank third in wRC+ versus righties, only behind the Padres and Yankees. Also, the Orioles own the best slugging percentage against right-handers.

One of the prime reasons for the success against righties is Ryan O'Hearn and Anthony Santander. Santander is a terrific power source, while O'Hearn is the ideal presence in the middle of the order with a minuscule 10% K rate and 8.4% BB rate. Those are two major areas of improvement from O'Hearn, as he punched out 22% of the time last year, and walked at just a 4% clip.

The Orioles have a pair of All-Star starters, but only one is performing as such. Adley Rutschman is 2-for-25 in his last seven games. He needs a get-right game in the worst way; his 91 wRC+ against righties is a less favorable matchup for the star catcher.

On the flip side, the Orioles' best-player, Gunnar Henderson, is batting .360 with a .600 SLG and 178 wRC+ in July. At least one of the two All-Star starters for the AL East leaders is performing like one.

Cubs vs. Orioles

Betting Pick & Prediction

I like the Orioles run line.

There's legitimate value here. I looked back through recent Orioles home games to find a comparable pitching matchup to Taillon-Kremer. On June 29, the Orioles started Cade Povich (who the market likely values less than Kremer) and the visiting Rangers started Michael Lorenzen (who the market likely values less than Jameson Taillon) — the Orioles closed as -164 moneyline favorites and +125 on the run line. The market could be high on Taillon as the O's can be found at +140 or better on the run line.

Chicago's offense isn't strong, and the bullpen is even worse. If Baltimore holds a late lead that factor could shift the game in the Orioles' favor in the run line category.

Pick: Orioles -1.5 (+140)
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