The Toronto Blue Jays and Chicago Cubs are both in the thick of a playoff race entering Friday night’s matchup in Toronto.
The Cubbies are 2.5 games back in the NL Central division while the Jays have cut into their deficit to the Baltimore Orioles in the AL East – sitting six games back.
Both teams could also make the playoffs through the wild card.
Chicago’s offense has been hot since the All-Star break, but it may have a tough time against Blue Jays starter Jose Berrios (9-7, 3.38 ERA) in this game.
The Cubs counter with youngster Javier Assad (1-2, 3.35 ERA) who has mainly worked out of the bullpen in 2023. That means Chicago’s pen (3.98 ERA this season) will be tested tonight.
Here are the latest odds and my best bet for this matchup:
Cubs vs. Blue Jays odds, run line and total
Cubs vs. Blue Jays prediction and pick
Assad has pitched well this season for Chicago, but it’s hard to expect much of him in his second start this month. In his first outing as a starter since April, Assad allowed five hits and two earned runs in a win over the Atlanta Braves.
He pitched 3.2 innings in that game.
Going up against the Toronto offense won’t be as tough as Atlanta, but it’s still a tall task. The Jays are ninth in Major League Baseball in OPS this season and have a +58 run differential.
Berrios has been great over the last two months, allowing three or fewer runs in every start since July 1 (2.31 ERA over that stretch).
In fact, Berrios has been great since his third start of the season. The righty got knocked around to open the season, but in his last 21 outings – a huge sample size – he has a 2.78 ERA and the Jays are 14-7 in those games.
Any time he’s pitching, the Jays are the bet to make. That doesn’t change tonight.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.