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Chicago Cubs at San Francisco Giants Betting Preview

Sunday night features the finale of two third-place National League teams as the Chicago Cubs (41-59, 3rd in NL Central) take on the San Francisco Giants (50-51, 3rd in NL West). The Giants will host this one at Oracle Park, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:08 pm ET.

The Giants have won two of the first three games in this series, including a 5-4 win on Saturday. Tyler Rogers picked up the win in relief. While the Giants gave up three runs in the ninth inning, Dominic Leone was eventually able to nail down the save.

Offensively, the Giants managed five runs on seven hits. Both Luis Gonzalez and Joey Bart went deep in the win.

Chicago’s Drew Smyly struggled in the loss. He lasted just four innings, allowing five runs on seven hits while striking out five.

Willson Contreras and David Bote both had two hits apiece for the Cubs, but despite putting together ten hits, they could only manage four runs. The biggest problem is that 25 runners were left on base throughout the game for Chicago.

The Giants are the favorites playing at home in this one. They are -188 to win while the Cubs’ moneyline sits at +158. The runline features Chicago +1.5 (-142), and the over/under for total runs is 7.5.

Cubs Could Be Working Phones During Sunday’s Contest

At 41-58, the Cubs sit 15 games back in the NL Central, and playoff aspirations are minimal at best in the Windy City. With that being said, the Cubs may be worried just as much about working the phones and discussing possible deals as they are in winning the game.

Having already traded reliever Chris Martin, other names that could move include Willson Contreras (.255 avg, 14 HR, 38 RBI), Ian Happ (.280 avg, 9 HR, 46 RBI), David Robertson (14 saves, 3-0, 2.23 ERA), and others.

Speaking of Contreras, he has had success against the Giants’ Carlos Rodon in his career. In seven at bats, he is hitting .286 with a home run and three runs batted in.

Trying to earn a series split on Sunday will be pitcher Adrian Sampson. In eight games this season, the 30-year-old Sampson is 0-1 with a 3.20 ERA and 1.17 WHIP, and he has 26 strikeouts in 39.1 innings.

In his last outing, Sampson earned a no-decision despite giving up just two runs in seven innings of work against the Pirates.

Giants Need To Make Postseason Move

Despite sitting just one game under .500, the Giants sit in third place in the NL West, 17.5 games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers. While a Wild Card spot is more attainable, they still sit 4.5 games back of the Phillies for the third spot.

If the Giants hope to make the postseason, they certainly need to make a push quickly. However, having lost eight of their last 10, reports have indicated that they are at least willing to listen to veteran players to possibly sell off some of their pieces.

One piece that would be hard to move but could net the biggest return is Sunday’s starter, Carlos Rodon. In 20 games this season, the 29-year-old Rodon is 8-6 with a 3.18 ERA, 1.12 WHIP, and has 148 strikeouts in 116 innings.

Rodon has been roughed up in back-to-back starts giving up ten runs in his last 11 innings pitched. In that span, he has allowed nine hits while striking out 17.

Offensively, Joc Pederson is out with a concussion, meaning Wilmer Flores is their best hitter right now. In 330 at bats, he is hitting .248/.328/.445 with 15 home runs and a team-leading 55 runs batted in and 53 runs scored.

Only Tommy La Stella (hitless in two at bats) has faced the Cubs’ Adrian Sampson.

Take San Francisco To Win And Cover

While the Cubs have won seven of their last nine games, they have struggled against the Giants, losing five of their last six matchups.

Expect that to continue on Sunday. Even though Carlos Rodon has struggled in recent outings, facing a team that ranks just 19th in scoring averaging 4.28 runs per game.

For a Giants team that ranks eighth in scoring (4.62 runs) and are even better at home (4.72 runs), they should be able to get to Adrian Sampson in this one.

For those reasons, take San Francisco to not only win but to cover the -1.5 runline (+118) as well.

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