Chicago had to be feeling pretty confident in their NLDS game two matchup with Washington Saturday afternoon. The Cubs held a 3-1 lead going into the bottom of the 8th and were set to take a 2-0 lead back to Wrigley. Then Bryce Harper happened. Then Ryan Zimmerman happened. Home runs by both Nationals sluggers sent Washington to a 6-3 lead and all of a sudden Chicago finds themselves in a must win against Max Scherzer for the MLB Predictions Nationals Cubs Game three.
Chicago opened as +115 underdogs but that line has switched to the Cubs being -105 now. Much of that has to do with the questions surrounding Washington starter Max Scherzer, who was pushed back to game three after leaving his last regular season start with hamstring issues. Regardless of the uncertainty of his leg, 65% of the bettors are backing Scherzer over Cubs starter Jose Quintana, who his making his first career postseason start. Overall, Washington is still a -115 bet.
Scherzer was just 4-2 n September including a 7ER performance four starts ago against Atlanta. He was 1-0 against the Cubs this year allowing only 2H in his only start. Cubs batters are hitting just .216 against him, but have hit 6 HR including 3 by Ben Zobrist across 25 plate appearances. For MLB Predictions Nationals Cubs Game Three you have to bank that Scherzer is healthy.
Chicago has held Washington scoreless in 15 of 17 innings thus far through the series but it was that eighth inning last time out that has them tightening up a bit. Manager Joe Maddon sends Jose Quintana to the mound, opting to save Jake Arrieta for game four. This is Quintana’s first postseason start and he has only faced three Nationals batters in his career. The left hander did go 5-1 down the stretch including a 10K shutout against Milwaukee on September 24th. Maddon has got to like the lefty-lefty matchup in this one but Bryce Harper (.311) and Daniel Murphy .291 both had relative success against southpaws.
MLB Predictions Nationals Cubs Game Three
There’s some unknown with Scherzer in this one but nothing to the mysteries surrounding what Jose Quintana will do in his first career postseason start. The Nationals offense has been struggling, but the MLB Predictions Nationals Cubs Game Three feels like the day they break open – ironically with less pressure as the road team.