After a split on Sunday, MLB handicapper Dalton Brown is back with two more bets for Monday looking to start the week on the right foot.
7:10 p.m. ET: Chicago Cubs at New York Mets: Cubs moneyline (+116) at FanDuel
The Chicago Cubs are headed to New York to begin a three-game series with the floundering Mets on Monday, and I'm backing Chicago to continue the misery for Buck Showalter's bunch.
Most of my write-ups go into detail on a matchup of starters, breaking down why I think one will out perform the other. This handicap is hardly about starting pitching - Cubs starter Drew Smyly has struggled lately. This is more about the price being offered to fade a free-falling baseball team in the Mets.
New York has dropped six straight since the trade deadline, a rudderless ship without a whole lot to play for the rest of the way. Chicago, meanwhile, has outscored all of baseball since the All-Star Break and pulled within 1.5 games of the Brewers atop the NL Central after taking two of three from the mighty Atlanta Braves. The vibes between these two clubhouses couldn't be any different right now, and there are factors on the field leading me toward Chicago here as well.
The Cubs lead baseball against right-handed pitching with a wRC+ of 130, putting them in good position to push Mets starter Kodai Senga around. Senga has been a relative bright spot for New York, but the righty allowed 11 hits to a bad Royals offense in his last start and walked five Cubs while losing to the Northsiders in May. Drew Smyly may be a struggling lefty for the Cubs, but New York could be just what he needs, too - the Mets' wRC+ of 77 against lefties since July 1 is merely 25th-best in MLB.
Let's ride the hot hand here, and trust Chicago at plus-money to come home a winner over the Mets.
8:10 p.m. ET: New York Yankees at Chicago White Sox: Yankees F5 -0.5 (-110) at BetMGM
The other teams from New York and Chicago will meet on the south side of the Windy City on Monday, as the Yankees travel to Guaranteed Rate Field to begin a series with the White Sox. Gerrit Cole and Dylan Cease make up a matchup of aces, but Cole has been far superior this season and deserves our backing.
Gerrit Cole has pitched to an ERA of 2.40 or less in each of the last two months, allowing three runs or fewer in 11 straight outings and two or fewer runs in nine of those 11. Cole has been a dominant force, to say the least - and against a White Sox lineup that ranks 28th in MLB with a wRC+ of 77 against righties, I would be surprised if Chicago scratched across more than a run over Monday's first five.
Talented righty Dylan Cease was coveted by plenty of contenders at the trade deadline, but not for his overall performance this season. Cease sports a 4.61 ERA, and recently it's been worse - over his last five starts, the righty has surrendered four or more runs on three occasions.
New York's offense is healthier than its been for much of this season right now, too - and after taking three of its last five over Houston and Tampa Bay, the Yankees are clearly a competitive ballclub right now. Chicago, meanwhile, is a marching band to nowhere - let's ride the better team, better starter, and better lineup to a lead in Monday's early going.