Chicago Cubs (71-62) at Cincinnati Reds (69-66)
Game Info: Friday, September 1st, 2023 at 1:10 p.m. EST (Great American Ball Park)
Betting Odds: Reds ML (-110) - Over/Under (9.5)
Pick: Reds ML (-110)
Friday afternoon, takes us to Cincinnati where the Cincinnati Reds open up a huge three game weekend series and they will take on the Chicago Cubs here in this one. Both of these teams are fighting for positioning in the National League Central division entering the final month of the season and whoever can manage to win this series will have the inside track on the other when it comes to the national league wildcard race and the National League Central division title race as well.
The Chicago Cubs had a very slow start to the season, but they have turned the burners on coming down the final stretch of the year. They are currently in second place of the National League Central division, and they will be looking to grab a key victory in the division title race here in this game on Friday afternoon against Cincinnati. Chicago currently occupies one of the three wild card spots in the National League as well as they have built up a two game lead on the rest of the pack, coming into the opening game of this series against the Cincinnati Reds.
They currently find themselves three games behind the Milwaukee Brewers for first place within the National League Central division, as they are well within striking distance coming into the final month of the season. Chicago has been one of the hottest teams in all of Major League Baseball over the last couple of weeks as they come into this game on a two game winning streak, and as winners of seven out of their last ten games on the season. Chicago will be looking to pick up a victory in the opening game of the doubleheader on Friday night to extend their lead in the wildcard race and gain more ground on the Milwaukee Brewers within the division as well.
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The Cincinnati Reds have been in a similar boat as the Chicago Cubs this season as they also had a less than impressive start to the season. They have since picked it up coming into the final month of the season and they will be looking to finish the job as they look to chase down a playoff spot coming into the final month of the season. Elly de la Cruz has played a major part in turning their season around and he is likely running away with the National League rookie of the year award right now.
Cincinnati will be looking to pick up a crucial victory at home here on Friday afternoon in the opening game of this series as they look to gain ground on Milwaukee in the National League Central division, and on Chicago in the National League wildcard race.
The Cincinnati Reds come into the opening game of this series with a record of 69-66 through the first 135 games of the 2023 Major League Baseball season. They are six games out of first place in the National League Central division, but they are only a single game out of the third wildcard spot in the National League coming into the opening game of the series on Friday afternoon. With a solid performance over the weekend against Chicago at home they could potentially get themselves into a playoff spot to open up the month of September.
Betting trends to consider in this matchup:
- Cincinnati is 11-4 after a day off
- Cincinnati is 39-29 after a win
- Chicago is 17-19 as a road underdog
Cincinnati will send Graham Ashcraft to the mound for the opening game of this doubleheader on Friday afternoon and he has been having a solid season despite the win-loss numbers not quite looking like they should. However, I expect him to have a quality performance in this game and for Cincinnati to pick up the victory here on Friday afternoon.
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