Chicago Cubs vs Pittsburgh Pirates MLB Pick – June 21

The MLB is set up with another strong slate of baseball throughout June 21. Fifteen games are up on the board throughout Tuesday night. One of these games will be between the Chicago Cubs and the Pittsburgh Pirates. These two teams have struggled this season, but will look for a big win in this one. This game will throw the first pitch at around 7:05 PM Eastern time.

Chicago has earned a record of 25-42 throughout this season, which has them sitting in fourth place of the NL Central. The Cubs have lost two games in a row and are 2-8 in their last ten. Chicago has fallen out of the playoff picture, but still have time to get back on track. The Cubs will look for a faster start on the road in this one.

The Pirates have put up a record of 27-39 so far on the season, which has them in third place of the NL Central. Pittsburgh has won two straight games, but are 3-7 in their last ten games. The Pirates have struggled a bit on the season, but will look to step up early. Pittsburgh will look to keep their winning streak alive at home.

These two teams are towards the bottom of the standings, but will look for a big win in this one. Pittsburgh has been a bit better on the season and will look to remain hot in this one. The Cubs have struggled as of late and will look to bounce back with a win. If either team can come out quickly in this one, it could be enough for the win.

Game Overview

The following odds are courtesy of Bovada:

Teams Spread Money Line Total
Chicago Cubs +1 ½ (-165) +134 Over 9 (-105)
Pittsburgh Pirates -1 ½ (+140) -160 Under 9 (-115)


Team Data Chicago Cubs Pittsburgh Pirates
Overall Record 25-42 27-39
Away/ Home Record 12-17 15-19
Batting Average .242 .221
Batting Average Away/ Home .235 .228
ERA 4.93 4.45
ERA Away/ Home 5.37 3.97

Betting Trends

Chicago Cubs

  • 5-13 in June
  • 4-6 when playing on Tuesday
  • 13-16 against divisional opponents
  • 13-29 in night games
  • 17-31 against right handers
  • 2-6 after allowing 10 or more runs
  • 14-28 after a loss
  • 6-18 against team with a losing record

Pittsburgh Pirates

  • 6-12 in June games
  • 1-9 when playing on Tuesday
  • 11-22 against division rivals
  • 16-22 in night games
  • 18-24 against right handed starters
  • 8-16 after a win
  • 15-13 against team with a winning record

These two teams have met up ten times throughout the season. The first two games in Pittsburgh were split between these teams. The Pirates won three of the next four games in Chicago. The Cubs won two of the next three game set. Oneil Cruz had four RBI’s in the first game of this set as the Pirates earned a 12-1 win at home.


The Cubs have been solid at the plate throughout this season. Chicago has a batting average of .242, which is 15th in the MLB. The Cubs have earned a .318 OBP, which is 13th in the league. Chicago has posted an OPS of .706, which is 14th in the MLB. The Cubs have a .241 BA against righties throughout the season.

Pittsburgh has struggled hitting the ball so far on the season. The Pirates have a .221 batting average, which is 28th in the league. PIttsburgh has put up an on base percentage of .291, which is also 28th in the MLB. The Pirates have earned a .649 OPS, which is 28th in the league. Pittsburgh has hit .221 against right handers this season.

Chicago has the edge at the plate in this one. The Cubs have been much better hitting the ball, but will look to get some more runs after getting 10 hits and one run in Monday’s loss. Pittsburgh will look to keep their own bats going after scoring 12 in the first game of this set. If either team can hit well early, it could be enough for the win.

Pitching Preview

Matt Swarmer will likely get the start on the mound for Chicago in this one. Swarmer has earned a record of 1-2 throughout his 4 starts on the season. He has posted a 5.23 ERA and a WHIP of 1.258 in those games. Swarmer’s last start was against the San Diego Padres. He gave up four hits and four runs through three and two thirds innings in the loss.

I expect Roansy Contreras to get the nod at pitcher for the Pirates on Tuesday night. Contreras has appeared in 8 games this season, going 1-1 in those outings. He has put up an ERA of 3.06 and a 1.299 WHIP in those matchups. Contreras pitched four and a third innings in his last start against the St. Louis Cardinals. He gave up six hits and three earned runs in the no decision.

These two pitchers have been solid throughout this season. Contreras has been a bit better, but Swarmer will look to bounce back after losing his last two starts. Pittsburgh has the edge in the bullpen as well. The Pirates relievers have a 4.14 ERA, which is 18th in the league. Chicago’s bullpen has an ERA of 4.78, which is 29th in the MLB.

Pick Overview

The Cubs have been struggling throughout the season and will look to bounce back in this one. Chicago is coming off a rough loss in their last start, but I think they will step up against the Pirates. The Cubs have been the better team hitting the ball this season. If Chicago can get a solid pitching performance, I think they can win on the road.

Bovada has Pittsburgh listed as a -160 against the money line in this one. This implies that the Pirates will win this game around 61.5 percent of the time. I think that this line should be closer to even with both teams struggling on the season. As big underdogs, I like the value on the Cubs to get the win on Tuesday night.

The Bet
Chicago Cubs
Andruw Burling / Author

Andruw Burling has been writing sports picks since 2017, covering mainly NHL and NBA content, but doing work in other sports as well. Andruw grew up in Las Vegas and has been around sports since a young age. He grew up a huge NHL and NBA fan and continues to use that knowledge in his content today.

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