The Chicago Cubs (18-19) will go on the road for a three-game series against the Minnesota Twins (21-17) that begins on Friday, May 12. First pitch from Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota is set for 8:10 p.m. ET, and the game will air on Apple TV+. The southpaw Drew Smyly (3-1, 3.05 ERA) will start for Chicago, while Minnesota counters with Sonny Gray (4-0, 1.35 ERA).
The Twins are home favorites with -150 moneyline odds at DraftKings Sportsbook. The Cubs are the +130 underdogs, and the run total is set at 7.5.
Cubs-Twins picks: Friday, May 12
Day to day: 2B Nico Hoerner (hamstring)
Out: SP Kyle Hendricks (shoulder), RP Brandon Hughes (knee)
Day to Day: RF Max Kepler (leg)
Out: SP Kenta Maeda (ankle), RP Caleb Thielbar (oblique)
Drew Smyly vs. Sonny Gray
Smyly will be making his eighth appearance of the year. He struggled with his pitch count in his last appearance against the Miami Marlins, throwing 83 pitches in just 3.1 innings of work. Smyly gave up two earned runs on three hits while walking three and striking out five. The lefty had been off to a strong start this season, but he’s a two-pitch pitcher with just a fastball and curve, which means things can go very wrong if one of those pitches isn’t on during a given start.
Gray is having a career year for the Twins. He is coming off his worst performance of the season, and it just saw him allow three earned runs on four hits in five innings. Outside of that fluke appearance, Gray has allowed either one earned or no runs in each of his other starts.
Chicago has scored at least four runs in five of its last six games. Minnesota has tallied three runs or fewer in four of its last six. Both starting pitchers have been adept at limiting the opponent’s run production this season, so I am still leaning toward the under, even with a low run total.
Pick: Under 7.5
Each of these teams are 2-3 over their last five games. Even with Smyly pitching extremely well, Minnesota still gets the edge with Gray on the mound. Outside of Kepler dealing with leg cramps, the Twins are finally getting healthy and should be able to provide enough run support to Gray to solidify a win.