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MLB Free Pick | Reds at Cubs

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At first glance, Sunday’s Reds-Cubs matchup might elicit a “meh” response, but upon closer examination there is some betting value there.

The Cubs are currently second in the NL Central while the Reds are trudging along in fourth-place, just a game-and-a-half behind third-place Milwaukee.

Cincinnati is sort of an enigma. With hitters like Jesse Winker and Nick Castellanos and solid pitching rotation; one would think the Reds would be a lot better than they are. They are pretty good at something and that is where baseball bettors should look for success on Sunday.


Game: Cincinnati Reds (21-25) at Chicago Cubs (26-22)
When: 2:20 PM ET, Sunday, May 30, 2021
Where: Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois
Current Line: OFF Total: OFF
Probable Pitchers: CIN Tyler Mahle (3-2) vs. CHI Jake Arrieta (5-4)
TV Coverage: MLB.TV
The Reds are one of the best Over teams in baseball. For a time, they were No. 1 in Over percentage, but were recently overtaken by the Minnesota Twins. The Over is 29-15-2 in Reds’ games this season.
The reason why the Reds have seen so many totals go Over is actually two-fold. Cincinnati is one of the better hitting teams in MLB. As a team, the Reds hit .248, which is seventh-best in baseball.
Castellanos (.359) and Winker (.346) are No. 1 and 2 in batting average in the majors. Both are near the top of the home run chart as well. Winker is sixth with 13 homers and Castellanos isn’t far behind with 12.


All of that hitting success has led Cincy to fourth-place on the runs per game list. The Reds put up 5.04 runs per game.
That’s not all. The Reds are also very good at giving up runs. Collectively, Cincinnati pitchers are 29th in MLB in ERA at 5.08. Only the Los Angeles Angels (5.26) are worse. Cincinnati gives up 5.52 runs per game.
For the math people out there, in a given Cincinnati Reds game you are likely to see 10 or 11 runs scored by both teams. The Reds have seen some high game totals, but they don’t consistently see totals of 9, 10, and 11 runs.
Go see how we did on our Canadiens at Maple Leafs free pick.
The Reds faced the Cubs in one series already this season. The game totals were 9, 9, and 8.5. Chicago isn’t as prolific as Cincinnati, but the Cubs do manage to score 4.60 runs per game.
The Cubs had a recent run of four straight Unders, but two of those games were against Pittsburgh, the worst scoring team in MLB.
Both Mahle and Arrieta are solid pitchers with winning records, but they do give up a lot of runs. Mahle got shelled for seven earned runs in a recent loss to San Francisco. Arrieta has given up nine runs in his last three starts.
The Over is 13-7-2 in Cincinnati games played on the road this season. In the previous series between the two teams, the Reds won two of three. In their two wins, Cincy scored 21 runs. Look for more of the same on Sunday and take the Over (up to 9).


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