MLB Baseball: San Francisco Giants vs. Chicago Cubs Preview, Prediction & Odds -- Sept. 10, 2021

by Big Al Staff

Game time: 2:20 p.m. ET 
Venue: Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL
Where to watch: NBCS BA, Marquee Sports Network, MLB Network

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Giants -180, Cubs +155
BetMGM: NL
Caesars: NL

Season record
Giants: 90-50 (1st place, NL West)
Cubs: 65-76 (4th place, NL Central)

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Giants - Cubs preview and analysis


Recent form
Giants: Won 6 of 7
Cubs: 8-2 in last 10

Here come the Giants again. Following a four-game losing streak that saw the Giants lose three out of the four-game series against the Milwaukee Brewers, the Giants have reeled off six wins in seven games and have regained control of first place in the National League West over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Now San Francisco turns attention to the Chicago Cubs, who despite being in fourth place in the National League Central and no reasonable expectations to make the playoffs, have won eight of 10 and had a seven-game winning streak not too long ago.

One would think the Cubs just took care of some bad teams to get on this run. That would almost be the case if you didn’t sprinkle taking two of three against the Cincinnati Reds in Wrigley starting on Monday.

So even if they did register wins against the Pittsburgh Pirates and Minnesota Twins, the Cubs have actually played decent baseball.

The Giants will wrap up a six-game road trip with this three-game set in Chicago, then they’ll return to Oracle Park for a crucial four-game series with the San Diego Padres. San Francisco leads the Dodgers by 2.5 games, and the Padres are trying to maintain the second NL wild-card spot.

The pitching matchup has yet to be decided, outside of Kyle Hendricks getting the start for Chicago. Johnny Cueto (elbow) is not an option with Kevin Gausman getting the start on Saturday. Anthony DeSclafani lasted only 4.1 innings in the start Wednesday at Coors Field, so he’ll be likely refreshed for his start Monday against the Padres.

Prediction


San Francisco’s offense has been a consistent force this season, and there’s an opportunity to take advantage of Hendricks’ inconsistent spots on the mound. We like the Giants after a day off to take care of business, with the under.

Betting trends


The Giants are 58-28 (+16.6 net games) as a favorite this season.

The Cubs are 7-1 in September and are 15-7 (+12.2 games on the moneyline) following a game where they allowed one run or less.

Key injuries


Giants: 2B Wilmer Flores (hamstring), RF Mike Yastrzemski (ankle, questionable)

Cubs: SP Keegan Thompson (10-day IL)

Players to watch


Giants: Kris Bryant will make his return to Wrigley Field after the former MVP was traded to San Francisco at the trade deadline. Since coming to the Giants, Bryant has batted .265 with six homers and 14 RBI.

Cubs: Patrick Wisdom has struggled to hit the ball, but his power has been there. He’s hit seven homers in his past 18 games, but batting .194 in that span.

Projected lineup


Giants:
Tommy La Stella (L) 2B
Brandon Belt (L) 1B
Buster Posey (R) C
LaMonte Wade Jr. (L) LF
Brandon Crawford (L) SS
Kris Bryant (R) 3B
Mike Yastrzemski (L) RF
Steven Duggar (L) CF
TBD P

Cubs:
Rafael Ortega (L) CF
Frank Schwindel (R) 1B
Ian Happ (S) LF
Willson Contreras (R) C
Patrick Wisdom (R) 3B
Jason Heyward (L) RF
David Bote (R) 2B
Sergio Alcantara (S) SS
Kyle Hendricks (R) P

Statistical leaders


Giants:
Batting average: Brandon Crawford (.293)
Hits: Brandon Crawford (120)
Home runs: Kris Bryant (24)
RBI: Brandon Crawford (80)
Stolen bases: Austin Slater (13)
Wins: Kevin Gausman (13)
Saves: Jake McGee (30)
ERA: Kevin Gausman (2.58)

Cubs:
Batting average: Ian Happ (.220)
Hits: Ian Happ (87)
Home runs: Patrick Wisdom (25)
RBI: Ian Happ (50)
Stolen bases: Rafael Ortega (8)
Wins: Kyle Hendricks (14)
Saves: Rowan Wick (3)
ERA: Kyle Hendricks (4.65)

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All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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