Chicago Cubs vs Pittsburgh Pirates MLB Pick – June 23

The MLB is set up with another great slate of baseball action on Thursday. Ten games are up on the board throughout June 23. One of these games will be between the Chicago Cubs and the Pittsburgh Pirates. These two teams have been struggling throughout this season and will look for a win in this one. This game will throw the first pitch at around 12:35 PM Eastern time.

Chicago has earned a record of 26-43 throughout this season, which has them sitting in fourth place of the NL Central. The Cubs are coming off a win in their last game, which ended a three game losing streak. Chicago has fallen far behind in the playoff race, but still have time this season. The Cubs will look to step up early on the road.

The Pirates have put up a record of 28-40 so far this season, which has them in third place of the NL Central. Pittsburgh is coming off a loss in their last game, which ended a three game winning streak. The Pirates are ten and a half games back on the division entering this one. Pittsburgh will look to get back in the win column at home.

These two teams have been solid throughout this season and will look for a big win on Thursday afternoon. The Cubs were able to win the last game of this series and will look to build on it. Pittsburgh has been the better team as of late and will look to keep it going. If either team can come out fast, 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 (+135) -120 Over 8 ½ (+100)
Pittsburgh Pirates +1 ½ (-160) +100 Under 8 ½ (-120)

 

Team Data Chicago Cubs Pittsburgh Pirates
Overall Record 26-43 28-40
Away/ Home Record 13-18 16-20
Batting Average .244 .220
Batting Average Away/ Home .238 .225
ERA 4.90 4.54
ERA Away/ Home 5.27 4.17

Betting Trends

Chicago Cubs

  • 6-14 in June games
  • 3-5 when playing on Thursday
  • 14-17 in divisional games
  • 12-13 in day games
  • 8-11 against left handed starters
  • 6-19 against team with a losing record

Pittsburgh Pirates

  • 7-13 in June
  • 2-3 when playing on Thursday
  • 12-22 against division rivals
  • 11-17 in day games
  • 9-15 against left handers
  • 16-13 against team with a losing record

These two teams have met up 12 times throughout this season. The first two games in Pittsburgh were split 1-1. The Cubs were able to win three of their next four against the Pirates. Pittsburgh won two of the next three game set. The Pirates won the first two games of this series, but Chicago won Wednesday’s tilt. Pittsburgh has outscored the Cubs 58-55 in the season series.

Offense

The Cubs have been solid hitting the ball throughout this season. Chicago has a .244 batting average, which is 16th in the league. The Cubs have earned an on base percentage of .320, which is 10th in the MLB. Chicago has posted a .713 OPS, which is 13th in the league. The Cubs have a BA of .245 against lefties this season.

Pittsburgh has struggled a bit at the plate so far this season. The Pirates have a batting average of .220, which is 28th in the MLB. Pittsburgh has put up a .291 OBP, which is also 28th in the league. The Pirates have earned an OPS of .651, which is 28th in the MLB. Pittsburgh has hit .222 against left handers. 

Chicago has the edge at the plate entering this matchup. The Cubs will look to keep their bats going early in this one after scoring 14 runs on 13 hits in Wednesday’s win. Pittsburgh has been solid hitting the ball in this series as well, racking up 24 runs in three games. If either team can hit well early, it could be enough for the win.

Pitching Preview

Justin Steele will likely get the start at pitcher for Chicago on Thursday afternoon. Steele has earned a record of 2-5 throughout his 13 starts on the season. He has put up a 4.27 ERA and a WHIP of 1.475 in those outings. Steele pitched five innings in his last start against the Atlanta Braves. He gave up five hits and two runs in the win.

I expect Jose Quintana to get the nod on the mound for the Pirates in this one. Quintana has started in 13 games this season, going 1-4 in those matchups. He has posted an ERA of 3.66 and a 1.328 WHIP in his starts. Quintana’s last start was against the San Francisco Giants. He gave up five hits and three runs through five and a third innings.

These two pitchers have been solid throughout the season and will look to keep it going in this one. Pittsburgh has the edge in the bullpen in this one. The Pirates relievers have a 4.14 ERA, which is 18th in the league. The Cubs bullpen has an ERA of 4.73, which is 27th in the MLB. Both teams will look for pitching to dominate in this one.

Pick Overview

These two teams have been solid throughout this season and will look for a big win in this one. Chicago is coming off a dominant win on Wednesday night and I think they will build on it in this one. The Cubs have the better hitting and if Steele can step up, I believe they can earn the win. If Chicago gets the early lead, I like their chances to tie this set up.

Bovada has the Cubs listed as a -120 against the money line in this one. This implies that Chicago will win this game around 54.6 percent of the time. I think that this line is accurate with the Cubs having the better hitting team. Chicago will look for their pitching to step up as well. As slight favorites, I like the value on the Cubs.

The Bet
Chicago Cubs
-120
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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