Cubs starting pitcher Justin Steele is a +2500 favorite (DraftKings) to win the 2023 NL Cy Young award, and the Cubs are a +550 favorite (DraftKings) to make the 2023 National League playoffs.
2023 Cubs Season Thus Far
Chicago is 20-26 on the young season and is playing .500 ball at Wrigley Field but just 9-15 as the away team. Chicago has six series victories to their credit and leads the National League with a +21 run differential. The Cubs open up a six-game homestand beginning Tuesday with the New York Mets, followed by a three-game series with Central Division rival Cincinnati.
Christopher Morel is the first Cub in franchise history (since 1901) to record eight home runs in the first 11 games of a season! pic.twitter.com/zwZWl3NSw3
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) May 21, 2023
2023 Cubs Offense
The Cubs’ offense has been better than average, ranking 5th in runs scored and 4th in hits. Chicago has swiped 40 bags and above the NL average in nearly every statistical category, but they’ve stranded a second-to-last 3.76 runners in scoring position.
- Nico Hoerner is 20th in batting average and is the team leader in hits and RBI
- Patrick Wisdom has team-highs in bombs (12) bombs and strikeouts (59)
- Cody Bellinger is 2nd on the team with 20 RBI but currently on the IL with a knee contusion
- Ian Happ leads the Cubs in doubles but has struck out 47 times
- Dansby Swanson leads Chicago with a 2.1 WAR
- Christopher Morrel has eight dingers through his first 11 games
David Ross provides an update on Cody Bellinger following tonight's exit. pic.twitter.com/H18iiAxKmB
— Marquee Sports Network (@WatchMarquee) May 16, 2023
2023 Cubs Pitching Staff
Chicago starting pitchers are maybe a bit better than advertised. Steele and Marcus Stroman have eight quality starts apiece, Drew Smyly has been better than expected, and as a staff, is 4th in team ERA amongst their National League peers. Cubs pitchers have allowed the 3rd-fewest walks and the 4th-fewest home runs in the NL thus far.
The Cubs’ bullpen has been a mess. They have the 4th highest team ERA in the NL, but their xFIP is nearly a run lower, and they’ve surrendered the second-fewest bombs per nine frames, so there is hope.
- Justin Steele is the unquestionable ace of the staff, leading in WAR as well as strikeouts
- Drew Smyly is 4-1 with a team-best 0.93 WHIP and 1.3 WAR
- Marcus Stroman leads Chicago in innings pitched with a 1.7 WAR
- Jameson Taillon has been brutal, yielding 1.69 bombs and 3.38 free passes per nine frames
- Michael Fullmer began the season as the Cubs closer but has been awful, surrendering 1.42 bombs and 3.32 walks per nine innings
- Keegan Thompson was brutal before being sent back to AAA Iowa on Friday
- Mark Leiter Jr is tied for 21st in the MLB in holds and is the Cubs’ closer
— Marquee Sports Network (@WatchMarquee) May 20, 2023
Chicago Cubs Team Futures
Cubs to Make the Playoffs Yes +550 No -650 (DraftKings)
That’s a big number (+550). Chicago is just five games back in the division standings, but going 3-7 over their last 10 hasn’t been helpful. Chicago has the sticks to compete in the NL Central, but the bullpen is a mess, and the team has difficulty plating runs with men in scoring position. The Cubs’ +21 run differential is encouraging, but the bullpen woes will likely keep Chicago from making the playoffs. -650 is too much juice to lay for this bet.
Chicago Cubs Individual Awards
Justin Steele to Win NL Cy Young Award +2500
Steele has been dynamite this season and is tied with Arizona Diamondbacks ace Zac Gallen and Los Angeles Dodgers legend Clayton Kershaw for most wins in the National League (6). Steele is 3rd in the NL in ERA, but his xFIP is nearly 1.5 runs above his ERA, so maybe Steele may regress a bit. Still, Chicago averages 5.8 runs of support per Steele start, and if this can continue, and it really could, Steele could come from nowhere and win this award. +2500 is an excellent price for this bet and one you should consider making.
Justin Steele, Wicked 84mph Slider. 🤢 pic.twitter.com/q6P2JdI9SA
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 21, 2023
Follow us for more IL sports betting news.