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Odds taken from Caesars Sportsbook
|San Diego Padres
|O 10.5 (-105)
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The Cubs are an absolute disaster, having lost nine in a row and 10 of their last 11. San Diego, meanwhile, is red hot, having gone 10-3 in its past 13 games. The Padres’ Joe Musgrove is one of the hottest pitchers on the planet.
Garcia’s 2022 record: (21-14)
There are a lot of pitchers off to impressive starts this season across the MLB, but few can match the production of the Padres’ Joe Musgrove. The 29-year-old is off to by far the best start of any season in his career, having been virtually unhittable so far this year.
Musgrove is a perfect 7-0, ranks second in the MLB in ERA (1.50), 8th in WHIP (0.93) and 72 strikeouts in exactly 72 innings. Somehow, he just continues to get better as the year goes on.
All 11 of his starts this year have been quality starts – he’s the only pitcher in the majors who can make that claim – and not only that, he hasn’t given up more than two runs in any outing.
In his past four starts, Musgrove has given up just one earned run in 27 innings on 15 hits and 10 walks with 25 strikeouts. The Padres are 10-1 when he takes the mound.
The Cubs will counter with Matt Swarmer, who after two impressive starts to open his season got shelled by the Yankees. Swarmer threw six innings and allowed just one run in each of his first two starts to Milwaukee and St. Louis, but then allowed six runs in five innings in New York.
Overall, he’s 1-1 with a 4.24 ERA and 1.00 WHIP with 15 strikeouts and just three walks in 17 innings.
The Cubs are maybe the coldest team in baseball having lost nine in a row. Many of those games, like Wednesday’s 19-5 throttling, haven’t even been close. They also lost 18-4 to the Yankees earlier this week and have now been outscored by 58 (!) runs during that streak.
Chicago’s offense has been okay this year, ranking in the top half of baseball in batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage while its’ pitching ranks in the bottom third of the league in average against (23rd), WHIP (23rd), ERA (26th) and quality starts (27th).
In the past five games before Wednesday only Ian Happ (6-of-19) was hitting better than .300 for the Cubs.
Meanwhile, the Padres couldn’t be hotter. Every player who started Wednesday had at least one hit and reached base multiple times, while five different players racked up three hits.
San Diego has now caught the slumping Dodgers and is in a tie for first place in the NL West, thanks to Manny Machado’s two-homerun, four-RBI night.
If there’s anybody who may be able to help Chicago break out of its current funk in this situation, it might be Nico Hoerner. The shortstop has played very well at home this year, going 27-for-84 (.321) with a .345 OBP and an .821 OPS.
We really could pick any of a number of Padres for this one, but we’re going to go with Jake Cronenworth. He comes off his third consecutive three-hit night, this one had two RBIs and three runs scored as his average has gone from .221 to .245 since Sunday.
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|San Diego Padres at Chicago Cubs Information
|San Diego Padres at Chicago Cubs
|Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois
|Thursday, June 16, 2:20 p.m. EST
|How to watch
|Bally Sports San Diego, Marquee Sports Network
Tony writes about baseball for WSN.com after recently graduating with his Masters from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Prior to that, Tony was a local sports reporter for MLive Media Group, based out of Jackson, Michigan where he covered everything from high school to professional sports. He graduated from Michigan State in 2015 with a degree in journalism. During his time there he covered the Michigan State football and men’s basketball teams from 2013-15 and hosted a sports radio show on WDBM 89FM.More info on Tony Garcia
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