Cubs vs. Astros prediction and odds for Tuesday, May 16 (Back Chicago with Steele on mound)
By Reed Wallach
The Chicago Cubs couldn't pull the upset in its first game in Houston against the Astros, but have arguably its best pitcher on the mound on Tuesday to try again.
Justin Steele is building a National League Cy Young case this season, and will look to further his candidacy with a win in Houston against the defending World Series champions Astros. Houston will counter with Cristian Javier, can the Cubs lineup knock him around en route to an upset win?
Here are the odds for Tuesday's clash:
Cubs vs. Astros odds, run line and total
Cubs vs. Astros prediction and pick
Steele has won six of his eight starts and is yet to face a loss. He has an ERA of 1.82 while striking out more than seven batters per nine innings. He has been excellent at working out of jams by generating soft contact and inducing double plays. He has a ground ball rate of about 51% this season and a home run rate of about 0.4 per nine innings.
Limiting damage is key against a vaunted Astros lineup, but one that has struggled against lefty pitching this season, just 19th in on-base percentage. Steele, a southpaw, will be able to work through the Houston lineup as it continues to round itself into World Series form.
On the other side, the Cubs have been elite against right handed pitching, fifth in on-base percentage, key against a pitcher of Javier's stature that is striking out 10 batters per nine innings.
Ultimately, this is a play on the price of Steele and the elite Cubs lineup. While Houston was able to win in the first game of the series, I'll back the lefty to show up and help the team cash as underdogs.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.