Nationals vs. Cubs prediction and odds for Wednesday, July 19 (Trust Cubs' pitching)

Kyle Hendricks and the Cubs have the pitching advantage on Wednesday.

Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks.
Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks. / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Cubs are hoping to make a push in the NL Central standings when they take on the Washington Nationals on Wednesday, June 19.

Chicago is 7.5 games out in the NL Central, but it has a favorable matchup today against one of the worst teams in Major League Baseball.

Kyle Hendricks (3-4, 3.57 ERA) gets the ball for Chicago against Trevor Williams (5-5, 4.42 ERA). Hendricks has been roughed up his last two starts, but he’s still been solid in 2023 after missing the start of the season due to injury.

The Nationals are better than they were in 2022, but the team still has yet to crack 40 wins and has a run differential of minus-100 on the season.

Here are the odds and my best bet for this matchup: 

Nationals vs. Cubs odds, run line and total

Nationals vs. Cubs prediction and pick

Hendricks has given up nine runs over his last two starts, raising his ERA nearly an entire run from 2.64 to 3.57.

Still, the Cubs are 6-4 in his starts this season, and he’s only allowed more than three earned runs in those two starts.

The Cubbies and Nats are 14th and 15th in OPS over the last 30 days, so I’m really focused on the pitching when deciding how to bet on this matchup.

Williams is the clear inferior starter, posting a 5.12 ERA since the start of June while allowing 47 hits and 15 walks in just 38.2 innings of work. On the season, his WHIP is 1.42.

Those numbers, coupled with Washington’s No. 29 bullpen in terms of ERA, leads me to a wager on the Cubs.

Hendricks should be able to outduel Williams, but even if he doesn’t, I have very little confidence in the Nationals actually holding this lead.

Ride with the home team on Wednesday.

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.