World Series Betting: Indians vs Cubs Game 6

jake-arrieta-vs-indiansHaving lost two straight games at home and on the brink of elimination, the Chicago Cubs needed a big win to extend the World Series. And they did this on Sunday, beating the Cleveland Indians 3-2, narrowing the series gap to 3-2 as action heads back to Progressive Field.

The Cubs used a 3-run barrage in the fourth inning to take a 3-1 lead. They would never relinquish the lead as Jon Lester pitched 6-plus solid innings, and closer Aroldis Chapman got the final eight outs to end the game.

“A lot of people in Chicago have not seen a World Series game win,” said first baseman Anthony Rizzo, referencing how the Cubs hadn’t won a home World Series game since 1945. “I’m sure it’s emotional for everyone. It’s emotional for us.”

Chicago manager Joe Maddon was caught up in the emotion too, admitting it to the Washington Post after the game.

“Please be nervous,” said Maddon. “Absolutely. You should be nervous. We have to win tonight, so go ahead and be nervous. It’s up to us to get you beyond that moment and get back to Cleveland.”

While this victory is definitely nice for the Cubs, the challenge now is finding a way to win two straight games in Cleveland. That said, let’s go over the line for Game 6 and offer some betting analysis.

GTBets Line for World Series Game 6 (8:05pm EST at Nov 1)
Chicago Cubs -1.5 (+110), moneyline -145 (J. Arrietta)
Cleveland Indians +1.5 (+135), moneyline +135 (J. Tomlin)

Analysis on World Series Game 6

On paper, it appears that Chicago will have the pitching advantage with Jake Arrieta taking the mound. The 2015 Cy Young winner had very good stats this year, going 18-8 and maintaining a 3.10 ERA.

However, Arrieta has struggled in the postseason, losing his first two starts against LA and San Francisco and producing a 5.55 ERA. He managed to right the ship against Cleveland in Game 2, allowing just 1 run in 5.3 innings during Chicago’s win. But he also threw 98 pitches and walked three batters.

More concern for Arrieta is that just 40 percent of his pitches went in the strike zone in Game 2 – his lowest rate all year. But that was a cold-weather game, while tonight will be a warmer affair. Plus, Arrietta has one of the best sliders in baseball, holding opponents to 5-for-25 against this pitch in the postseason.

josh-tomlin-vs-cubsTomlin didn’t have as impressive of regular season numbers, going 13-9 and tallying a 4.40 ERA. But he’s reached a new level in the playoffs, allowing just 3 runs in 15.3 innings. The 32-year-old is undefeated in the 2016 postseason, and he’ll look to keep that record going and close out the series.

The big problem, though, is that this is just the second time in Tomlin’s career that he’s pitched on three days’ rest. During the season, he had a 3.47 ERA with five days or more rest, versus a 5.42 ERA with four days’ rest. That could play a factor tonight as he faces a tough Cubs lineup.

The good news for Tomlin: he had the lowest walk rate among starters and has only given up one homer in his last seven starts. He’s not going to beat himself, and Chicago will need to get their bats going to win.

If Tomlin can pitch well enough into the sixth inning, the Indians’ bullpen – which has been stellar – will have a great chance to close out the game.

World Series Game 6 Betting Prediction: Cleveland Wins 4-3

Both Arrieta and Tomlin pitched excellent in their last outings. We don’t expect as great of pitching tonight, but both players will give their teams a chance to win. The big difference-maker, though, will be Cleveland’s bullpen combo of Andrew Miller and Cody Allen shutting Chicago out in the late innings.

The Tribe should be celebrating their first World Series win along with LeBron James, while Chicago will extend their drought to 109 years without a World Series victory.

 

World Series Betting: Indians vs Cubs Game 5

What looked like a competitive World Series on paper is shaping up to be a blowout as the Cleveland Indians won 7-2 last night to take a 3-1 series lead.

Chicago grabbed an early 1-0 lead on an Anthony Rizzo single. But it was all downhill from here for the Cubs, as Cleveland scored the next seven runs to walk away with the game.

First baseman Carlos Santana opened the scoring with a second-inning homer. Pitcher Corey Kluber put Cleveland in the lead for good with a single that sent Lonnie Chrisenhall home.

Second baseman Jason Kipnis put the game away when he hit a line-drive, 3-run homer that gave Cleveland a six-run lead. Chicago’s Dexter Fowler would hit a home run in the eighth inning to stop the bleeding, but it was too little too late.

Aside from providing offense for his own cause, Kluber pitched an excellent game, allowing just 1 run in 6 innings. The bullpen did the rest as Cleveland wrapped up their second straight game in Chicago.

Let’s continue discussing the series by looking at tonight’s Game 5 line, along with some analysis on what to expect.

GTBets Game 5 Line on Indians vs Cubs (8:05pm EST on Oct. 30)
Cleveland Indians +1.5 (-115), moneyline +200 (T. Bauer)
Chicago Cubs -1.5 (-105), moneyline -230 (J. Lester)

World Series Game 5 Preview

corey-kluber-world-seriesFor the Indians, tonight’s game is a matter of doing the same things that they’ve been doing. And this means that Cleveland manager Terry Francona will use normal game preparation that doesn’t include any big speeches.

“No, it might make them nervous,” said Francona. “They’re OK. They know how to play the game. In our game, you can’t meet every night. It’s not like football. If they don’t understand by now, they’re probably not going to. And I think they’re doing just fine.”

Kluber, who was the big winner yesterday, echoed this sentiment by saying that Game 5 will be “business as usual.”

Kipnis is taking a different approach, focusing on the importance of this game and how tough it will be to defeat Chicago three straight times at home.

“It’s not an ending yet,” Kipnis told the Chicago Tribune. “We’ve got one more to get. It’s probably going to be the hardest victory of the year. This is a special night for me and the team to take the first two here. Now we have a couple of tries to win one more. But we’re ready to get it. This is the fun one.”

Trevor Bauer will take the mound for Cleveland tonight. He’s the only pitcher to lose to the Cubs in the World Series. But Santana definitely isn’t worried about how Bauer will perform tonight.

“We’re confident, especially how we won in this very tough game,” said Santana. “Lester, he’s throwing very good baseball. He has experience in the World Series. But we’re fine. We’ll worry about tomorrow and try to win the game.”

The Cubs will trot out lefty Jon Lester, who’s hoping to end Chicago’s two-game slide and extend the World Series. Lester’s start in Game 1 was okay – 3 runs on six hits in 5.2 innings – but it still resulted in a 6-0 loss for Chicago.

This was markedly different from his first three postseason starts against San Francisco and LA, where he allowed just 2 runs in 21 innings while recording 14 strikeouts. There’s certainly reason to think that Lester can regain his touch in tonight’s matchup.

jon-lester-vs-indians“Jon is going to give us a good game,” said Chicago third baseman Kris Bryant. “He’s our ace for a reason.”

Another thing that Chicago needs to do better is get runs early in the game, before they fall behind and lose momentum. This is especially important when considering how well Cleveland’s bullpen has performed.

“We’ve just got to grab a lead,” said Chicago manager Joe Maddon. “We’ve got to grab a lead [before] the latter part of the game and avoid those [bullpen] guys with either being tied or them having a lead. That’s what we have to do.”

Chicago has only managed three runs, four walks, and a .292 on-based percentage through the first four innings of the World Series. The fifth inning and beyond has been even worse, with a .259 on-base percentage, so early runs are crucial.

One Team Will Make History

The Cubs haven’t won a World Series in 108 years, while Cleveland hasn’t won in 68 years. For the Indians, they have the added history of trying to bring both a baseball and basketball championship home in the same year.

One of these teams is going to break their winless streak and make history. Before this series, most thought it would be Chicago, given that they won 103 games – 9 more than Cleveland.

But down 3-1 in the series, the Cubs would need a Cleveland Cavaliers-type turnaround to come back and win. Only five of 44 MLB teams have pulled off this feat. Can Chicago become the sixth?

Prediction on World Series Game 5: Cubs Win 4-2

We see Cleveland closing this series out eventually, but it’s hard to see Chicago losing three straight at home, especially with their ace pitching tonight.