Another new series so let’s get to it. As always we start out seeing what the betting market thinks because they seem to know something about baseball. Here’s the current line (noon snapshot).
DATE 06_19 8:05_PM Jun_19_12:17 SDN CHN
LINEAWAY SDN [ 0.334 ] < 0.333 >
STARTAWAY 0.02(0.501) Clayton_Richard_SDN
LINEHOME CHN [ 0.683 ] < 0.697 >
STARTHOME 0.88(0.548) Jon_Lester_CHN
Wow. If you bet SDN today you’ll get $2 for every $1 risked. Clayton Richards used to pitch for the Cubs and we have him even steven, a completely average pitcher. Lester is slightly better this season and has had a brilliant career. The Ouija Board seems to take career value into account which is something to think about. The Cubs demand a huge premium over standard home field advantage of 0.540. The market thinks the Cubs have a better than 7/10 chance of winning today which means there is a 3/10 chance of losing. We know who Lester is, let’s take a look at Clayton Richard’s career.
He skipped a couple years and then Theo and Jed picked him up on the cheap and he pitched average. He had his best season last year which is quite a come back. 2008 and 2013 weren’t happy years for him. A WAA=-3.0 for that long of a career isn’t that bad but hopefully the Cubs take him down a couple more notches today. Here’s SDN team status.
I said this last time before the Cubs got swept in San Diego that everything was wrong with this team and everything is still wrong with this team. The Cubs’ team status would have looked like this at this time of the season 4 years ago too. As an aside, let’s look at the Cubs status line this day in 2013.
Not as bad as the current Padres but they had similar win loss records which is the only thing the commissioner of MLB looks at when deciding who goes to the playoffs.
We know the Padres will have a bad lineup so let’s see how bad. Lineups aren’t available now so we’ll use yesterday’ since they’ll be very similar.
A very below average lineup at 0.411. Erick Aybar stands out ranked #22 least valuable player in MLB and third worst hitter this season. I don’t mean to jinx anything though so let’s hope he continues baseball as normal for him today.
We’ll do weekly Cubs status in a couple of days. The Cubs lineups, like their win/loss record is moving sideways (i.e. average). They have hovered around 0.526 for a bunch of series now. They do have potential energy in talent. Bryant will probably play today making the above a little better than yesterday. And finally let’s look at relief.
The Cubs have good relief but Lester can pitch an entire game so it might not matter. Padres have a bottom tier of MLB relief staff slightly better than the Mets.
<anti jink on>
Get into these guys and, based upon the numbers, the Cubs hitters should be able to pad their stats a little.
<anti jinx off>
Unfortunately as we saw last season. Sometimes very bad pitchers and players are so bad and desperate to stay in MLB they will be hard to get out and hard to hit. The Cubs played poorly against bad pitching last season and got the bulk of their wins against mediocre ones.