The Pittsburgh Pirates and Chicago Cubs square off in Chicago. AJ Burnett and Charlie Villanueva are the scheduled starters. Updated MLB odds at posted at Oddsmaker sportsbook.
The Pirates enter in first place in the NL Central, a game ahead of St. Louis Cardinals by just one game. They are 24-18 on the road this season and have won seven of their last ten games. Burnett is coming off the disabled and making his first start since June eighth tonight. He comes in with a 4-6 record, 3.12 ERA and 1.13 WHIP. In his last start in Chicago against the Cubs, he pitched 8 1/3 innings, giving up four hits and two earned runs while striking out five. He has gone at last six innings in every start but one this season. The Pirates were on a nine game winning streak before losing for the first time in two weeks last Wednesday.
The cubs enter in fourth place in the division, 12 games behind these very Pirates. They are 18-23 at home and have won six of their last ten games. Villanueva is 2-4 with a 3.4 ERA and 1.17 WHIP. This will be his first start this season as he has come out of the bullpen for most of the season. In his last appearance in Oakland he lasted just 2 2/3 innings giving up two hits and two unearned runs. It came just four days ago as the Cubs continue to look for effective starters this season.
The Pirates have been playing great baseball and I see Burnett being solid against the lowly Cubs coming off the DL. Take Pittsburgh at best online sportsbooks.