The Chicago Cubs and Miami Marlins both entered the weekend with records above and with 14 wins after having losing seasons in 2022. The teams finish up their series in Miami on Sunday looking to keep their good starts going.
Chicago Cubs (-165, 8) vs. Miami Marlins
The Marlins will give Bryan Hoeing his third career start, hoping that this one goes better than his first two. Hoeing has a 14.85 ERA across his two starts, pitching a combined 6 2/3 innings and a lifetime 11.57 ERA across his MLB starts and relief appearances.
Behind Hoeing is a bullpen that ranks 23rd in ERA this season, and the team as a whole is tasked with limiting a Cubs lineup that entered the weekend batting an MLB-best average of .308 on the road this season.
While the Cubs entered Saturday leading the National League in total runs and runs per game on the road with 6.4, the Marlins ranked last in runs per game at home with 2.6 but should be due in for more offensive fireworks, hitting .250 at home, good for 15th in the MLB.
The Cubs will send starting pitcher Justin Steele to keep the Marlins’ offense cold as Steele has a 2.77 ERA and 0.6 home runs per nine innings allowed across 29 starts since the beginning of the 2022 season. That average climbs to a 3.43 ERA on the road with 3.4 walks per nine innings. Steele is also backed up by a Cubs bullpen that ranks 19th among MLB teams in ERA.
Even with Hoeing adding velocity to his fastball this offseason, he’s having issues at the big-league level and with having to face the National League’s top-scoring offense, the Cubs will leave Miami on Sunday with a win.
The Play: Cubs vs. Marlins Over 8