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Atlanta Braves vs Chicago Cubs Odds, Picks, Predictions & Pitching Matchup (May 21)

Sascha Paruk

by Sascha Paruk in MLB Baseball

Updated May 21, 2024 · 11:20 AM PDT

Atlanta Braves third baseman Zack Short sliding into second base against the Chicago Cubs
May 15, 2024; Cumberland, Georgia, USA; Atlanta Braves third baseman Zack Short (59) slides into second base next to Chicago Cubs second baseman Nick Madrigal (1) after hitting a double to drive in a run during the seventh inning at Truist Park. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
  • Two second-place teams tangle on Tuesday when the Atlanta Braves visit the Chicago Cubs
  • Atlanta has lost four of its past five while Chicago has dropped five of seven
  • See the ta Braves vs Chicago Cubs odds, predictions, and starting pitchers on May 21

Both favored to win their divisions at the start of the season, the Atlanta Braves (27-17, 11-9 away) and Chicago Cubs (26-22, 14-9 home) both have some early work to do, sitting second in the NL East and Central, respectively.

The Braves and Cubs start a three-game series at Wrigley Field on Tuesday night (6:40 pm CT/7:40 pm ET) with 40-year-old veteran Charlie Morton facing  26-year-old Javier Assad on the mound. Assad has been lights-out this season (4-0, 1.49 ERA, 1.03 WHIP) but oddsmakers give visiting Atlanta a slight edge in the Braves vs Cubs odds for May 21.

Atlanta Braves vs Chicago Cubs Odds

Team Moneyline Runline Total
Atlanta Braves (Morton) -125 -1.5 (+125) O 11.0 (-110)
Chicago Cubs (Assad) +105 +1.5 (-150) U 11.0 (-110)

Tuesday’s MLB odds list the Braves at -125 on the moneyline and +125 to win by multiple runs. The Cubs come back as slight +105 home underdogs and a -150 wager to keep the game within a run. The run total is at a massive 11.0 with hitter-friendly conditions expected at windy Wrigley Field.

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The Braves lost two of three to the Padres in their previous series, though won last time out on Monday night in the second leg of a Monday double-header. The Cubs lost three of four to division-rival Pittsburgh, scoring just 10 runs in the four games. The Cubs were off on Monday.

Weather Could Be a Huge Factor at Wrigley Field Tonight

The forecast at Wrigley Field tonight calls for balmy 83 degree temperatures and a 22 mph winds blowing out to left field. The winds are going to be a big advantage for hitters if they can get the ball in the air.

That’s great news for an Atlanta lineup that’s not producing at nearly the same level it did last year. The 20234 Braves led the league in runs scored (947) and tied the record for home runs by a team in a single season (307). This year, Atlanta is just 16th in total runs scored (207) and tied for 16th in home runs (46).

ATL vs CHC Starting Pitchers

Coincidentally, the pitching matchup will be a repeat of six days ago when the Cubs trounced the Braves 7-1 in Atlanta on May 15.

Ageless wonder Charlier Morton is having another solid season, posting a 3.52 ERA in his first eight starts of the year. However, he was tagged for four runs on five hits and three walks last time out by this same Cubs team he’ll be facing on Monday.

Charlie Morton vs Javier Assad

Morton
VS
Assad
3-1 Record 4-0
3.52 ERA 1.49
3.60 xERA 3.09
1.15 WHIP 1.03
23.7% SO% 21.6%

Morton’s numbers against the Cubs’ lineup are mediocre at best. Chicago’s hitters are slashing .277/.348/.410 against the righty in 83 total at-bats, though Mike Tauchman has the lone homer of Morton. Cody Bellinger is 7-for-18 with three doubles and two RBI.

YouTube video

Assad is following up a strong rookie season with an even better sophomore campaign. The 6’1 righty has a miniscule 1.49 ERA through nine starts and hasn’t allowed more than two runs in any game this season, pitching at least five innings in seven of his nine appearances.

Last time out, he shutdown the Braves, allowing just four hits and one walk over six scoreless with seven Ks. That was by far Assad’s best outing against Atlanta in his young career, and the Braves’ lineup is still slashing .250/.312/.477 off him with two homers, two doubles, and a triple in just 44 at-bats. Ronald Acuna Jr and Ozzie Albies have both taken him yard.

Atlanta Braves vs Chicago Cubs Predictions

I can’t back the Braves as road underdogs against a Cubs team that’s 14-9 at home and has its best pitcher on the mound, despite Chicago’s recent struggles. The players in this year’s Cubs’ lineup have been solid against Morton, and I see a strong chance that the 40-year-old is out-dueled by the youngster Assad for the second time in as many weeks.

Atlanta is also coming off a double-header in which five relievers combined to pitch 5.2 innings. The Cubs, on the other hand, were off on Monday and will have a much fresher pen at their disposal, which could be huge in game where the starters are likely to get tagged.

ATL vs CHC picks:

  • Cubs moneyline (+105)
  • Over 11.0 runs (-110)

Sascha Paruk’s 2024 MLB betting record: 11-7 (+1.09 units)

All wagers one unit unless expressly stated otherwise.

 

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