2021 Cubs Win Total Bet Over/Under: How Many Games Will Chicago Win?
Here’s our report on 2021 Cubs Win Total Bet: How Many Games Chicago Will Win, complete with a 2021 Cubs Wins Over/Under. The Game Day takes a dive into offseason acquisitions and losses to determine potentially profitable win total betting odds.
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2021 Cubs Win Total Bet: How Many Games Will Chicago Win?
2021 Cubs Wins Over/Under
- Over 78.5 wins (-110)
- Under 78.5 wins (-110)
A projected win total that implies a team has at least a 50 percent chance of finishing the season under .500 is never a good sign for a defending division champion, but that’s precisely the case with the 2021 Cubs. A season ago, Chicago was quickly booted out of the playoffs by the upstart Marlins in 2020 after winning the NL Central by a three-game margin with a 34-26 regular-season record. This year, oddsmakers are taking a fairly dim view.
The team did undergo a fair amount of personnel upheaval this offseason.
Chicago opted to part ways with Kyle Schwarber, Albert Almora, Jr. and Jose Martinez, but all three players hit under .200 last season. Long-time rotation stalwart Jon Lester was also allowed to walk despite putting together five consecutive double-digit win seasons in the Windy City from 2015-19. And most important, Yu Darvish, who was stellar with an 8-3 record, 2.01 ERA and 0.96 WHIP across 12 starts, is now in San Diego.
However, if the Cubs are outperforming their rather muted expectations in 2021, the key won’t be overcoming those personnel losses. Rather, multiple talented incumbents will simply need to revert back to their career norms to ensure Chicago doesn’t come anywhere close to last season’s collective .220/.318/.387 batting line. In fact, the offensive fortunes of the 2021 Cubs may largely rest in the once-potent bats of three players — Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez and Kris Bryant. All suffered from atypical downturns in their slash lines in 2020.
Rizzo limped to figures of .222/.342/.414. Baez checked in at .203/.238/.360. Bryant was just about as bad with a .206/.293/.351 tally. There were inflated strikeout rates to blame in Baez’s and Bryant’s cases, with injury also limiting the latter to 34 games. Meanwhile, Rizzo continued to profile as an excellent contact hitter but was saddled with very bad luck throughout the season in the form of an atypically low .218 BABIP (Batting Average of Balls In Play).
All three sluggers are healthy in Cactus League play and certainly have the past resume to support the notion a resurgence to some degree is in order. Then, David Bote, who’d slashed a relatively solid .257/.362/.422 over 127 games in 2019 but doesn’t have the track record of that trio, also slumped to a .200 average and .303 on-base percentage last season. However, Bote had a strong body of work at the plate in the upper levels of the minors in addition to his 2019 production against big-league arms. Therefore, a bounce-back effort is certainly a possibility for him as well.
One offseason acquisition of note that could also pay dividends and is essentially a direct replacement for Schwarber, Joc Pederson, also saw his numbers tumble precipitously in 2020 with the Dodgers. However, considering Schwarber was essentially just as poor and Pederson brings as much home-run upside, there’s no downside and plenty of possible upside to the swap.
On the pitching end of the equation, Kyle Hendricks bumps up to de facto staff ace with the departures of Darvish and Lester. Hendricks is a rock-solid veteran who’s ideally suited as a No. 2 or No. 3, but he’ll have to do for the time being as the top-of-the-rotation piece. Fellow vet Jake Arrieta, who returns after three so-so seasons in Philadelphia and was once a 22-game winner for the Cubs, is a fine reinforcement piece.
Yet it could be right-hander Zach Davies, who was 7-4 with a 2.73 ERA and 1.07 WHIP for the Padres last season and owns a 50-36 career mark, that could turn out to be one of the most underrated offseason acquisitions in all of baseball. He’ll slide into the No. 3 role to open the season, while Alec Mills and promising prospect Adbert Alzolay (1-1, 2.95 ERA, 1.17 WHIP in 21.1 seasons last year) round out the starting five.
Finally, the bullpen does shape up as a bit of a mixed bag as the regular season approaches. Brandon Workman arrived this offseason as an intriguing setup option, albeit one who’s had quite the rollercoaster career while interspersing strong stretches of pitching with statistical anomalies such as a 1-10 record in 2014 and a tally of six blown saves alongside a 1.88 ERA and 1.03 WHIP in 2019. Workman could become a particularly pivotal piece in 2021 if the once-dominant Craig Kimbrel, who has a 6.00 ERA and 1.53 WHIP across 36 innings in the last two seasons, falters yet again as a closer.
2021 Cubs Win Total Wager: Over 78.5 wins (-110)
Chicago Cubs To Win Over 78.5 Games In 2021
12/31, 7:00 PM
Bet $20, Payout $38
The Cubs endured a few offseason losses, but even the most prominent, that of Darvish, is surmountable in 2021. That’s particularly true because of the additions of Arrieta and Davies, who could make for a nice 1-2 punch in the middle of the rotation. Then, if Rizzo, Bryant and Baez all return to form, complementary figures such as Pederson, Jason Heyward, Willson Contreras and Ian Happ could help ensure the Cubs sport quite the power-packed lineup.
While Kimbrel is a legitimate concern at the moment, he has the ability to dominate if he finally finds his groove. All told, the Cubs have the potential for a good bit more than 79 wins, even if some of last year’s aforementioned underachievers fail to get all the way back to normal. The division is also solid but certainly far from the toughest in the NL , furthering cementing my belief David Ross‘s squad will hit the Over.
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