The Texas Rangers (4-2) and the Chicago Cubs (2-3) begin a three-game weekend series on Friday, April 7. First pitch from Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois will be at 2:20 p.m. ET, and the game will air on Apple TV+. Nathan Eovaldi (1-0, 5.40 ERA) will take the mound for Texas, while Chicago counters with ace Marcus Stroman (1-0, 0.00 ERA).
The Cubs are the -125 moneyline favorites at DraftKings Sportsbook. The Rangers are +105 underdogs, and the run total is set at seven.
Rangers-Cubs picks: Friday, April 7th
Day to day: UTIL Josh Smith (face)
Out: CF Leody Taveras (oblique)
Out: RF Seiya Suzuki (oblique), SP Kyle Hendricks (shoulder), RP Brandon Hughes (knee)
Nathan Eovaldi vs. Marcus Stroman
Eovaldi won his season debut against the Philadelphia Phillies. He only pitched five innings, but Texas scored 16 runs in the game, providing more than enough run support. Eovaldi allowed three earned on six hits but struck out six and walked two.
Stroman looked every bit the ace for the Cubs in his first outing. He pitched six shutout innings and gave up three hits. Stroman walked three but struck out eight. Chicago won the game 4-0, showing that a little run support goes a long way with Stroman.
The Rangers have scored five runs or fewer in four straight games, while the Cubs have scored at least five in three straight. Even with Stroman on the mound, I think we see run production from both teams in this game. Chicago doesn’t have the record to show it, but they are scoring ample runs and getting help from their whole lineup.
Pick: Over 7
Due to weather, Chicago had an impromptu two days off, so could be a little rusty for the home opener. Still, Stroman sets them up well on the mound, and Eovaldi has become inconsistent at this point in his career. If the Cubs can give Stroman some early run support as they did in his first start, they should be able to “Fly the W.”