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Cubs Best Bet vs Rangers in Opener

The Chicago Cubs have sky-high aspirations for 2024 and start off the season with the perfect opponent to prove they are up and coming when they take on the reigning World Series champion Texas Rangers.

The Cubs signed superstar slugger Cody Bellinger this offseason, but some are worried Chicago’s lineup isn’t up to snuff regarding World Series talent.

Cubs Best Bet vs Rangers in Opener
Cubs Best Bet vs Rangers in Opener

Last season, the Texas Rangers unexpectedly emerged as World Series victors, cashing hugely valuable MLB betting tickets. They are poised to contend this year, contingent upon securing sufficient pitching support until crucial players such as Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer return to full health. Their roster boasts an impressive mix of seasoned professionals, including shortstop Corey Seager and emerging talents like outfielder Evan Carter, presenting a well-rounded and promising team composition.

Let’s dig into this matchup and review my best MLB bet for the Cubs vs Rangers on Opening Day.


Cubs vs Rangers Game Information

  • Game: Cubs (0-0) vs Rangers (0-0)
  • Location: Globe Life Field, Arlington, TX
  • Day/Time: Thursday, March 28, 7:35 p.m. ET
  • Cubs vs Rangers Live Stream: MLB.tv


The Chicago Cubs open the season on the road against the reigning World Series champion Texas Rangers on Thursday night. Left-hander Justin Steele, a 16-game winner a year ago, gets the start for Chicago and will be opposed by right-hander Nathan Eovaldi. The game, to be played at Texas’ Globe Life Field, will be telecast by ESPN at 7:35 p.m.

  • Rangers are 6-0 in their last six interleague home games vs. a left-handed starter.
  • Rangers are 5-0 in Eovaldi’s last five starts as a home favorite of -110 to -150.
  • Rangers are 5-0 in Eovaldi’s last five starts on grass.
  • Over is 5-0 in Steele’s last five road starts.
  • Over is 4-0-1 in the Rangers’ last five home games.
  • Over is 4-0 in the Rangers’ last four games vs. a left-handed starter.
  • Under is 7-1-1 in the Rangers’ last nine interleague games vs. a left-handed starter.
  • Over is 12-2 in the Rangers’ last 14 games as a favorite of -110 to -150.
  • Cubs are 0-5 in their last five games as an underdog.


Cubs vs Rangers Betting Lines


Cubs vs Rangers Moneyline Prediction: Cubs +105

Heading into the new season, the Chicago Cubs are positioned as a strong bet online against the reigning World Series champion Texas Rangers, especially on opening day. They are at a disadvantage because the Rangers are missing key pitchers Max Scherzer and Jacob deGrom due to injuries.

Although Nathan Eovaldi is a reliable pitcher for Texas, his capabilities don’t quite match the elite standards of Scherzer or deGrom. Conversely, the Cubs bring their ace, Justin Steele, to the mound. Steele’s impressive track record from last season, boasting a 16-5 record, 3.06 ERA and 176 strikeouts, speaks volumes of his ability to control the game.

Historically, pitchers tend to set the pace in the season’s early weeks, and Steele’s past performances against the Rangers underscore his dominance. With an opening game last year where he allowed merely three hits and no runs over six innings and another game shortly after where he limited the Rangers to one run, Steele has proven his capability to stifle Texas’ lineup.

Moreover, the Cubs have retained power-hitting Cody Bellinger and surrounded him with solid hitters, enhancing their offensive threat.

Given the above factors, the Cubs’ blend of veteran leadership and burgeoning talent, spearheaded by Steele’s pitching prowess, makes them a compelling MLB pick to overcome the Rangers on opening day. Expect an intense showdown, but the Cubs have all the elements to clinch a victory and make a strong opening statement.



Cubs vs Rangers Alternate Runline Pick: Cubs -1.5 (+150)

The Cubs may be underdogs on the MLB odds board, but I think the Rangers are heading into an Opening Day letdown after their last victory won them the World Series. But, instead of just betting on the Cubs +1.5 at -205 odds, I will risk it all for the biscuit and take the Cubs to win with a reverse runline play. For those that don’t know, a reverse runline is when you take an underdog at +1.5 runs and shift them to a betting favorite at -1.5. In this case, the MLB line moves from -205 to a much more valuable +150 for the Cubs to win by 2+ runs.



Cubs vs Rangers Player Prop: Justin Steele Under 5.5 Strikeouts

I’m a big fan of Justin Steele. Heck, I reached up and took him earlier in the week in my fantasy baseball league over guys with a lot more clout. So why am I down on him here to fall under 5.5 strikeouts after averaging 9.14 Ks per nine innings in 2023? It’s simple. Steele exited his final tune-up game during spring training with a left knee contusion.

This is no big deal, but paired with the caution approach most managers have for starting pitchers in their first few starts, expect Steele to be on somewhat of a pitch count tonight. Therefore, this prop is based more on what the Cubs decide to do than what Steele can do when given time to operate.



Cubs vs Rangers Score Prediction

Cubs 5, Rangers 3



Questions of the Day

What are the MLB odds of the Cubs winning the World Series?

For all the preseason hype surrounding the Cubs’ potential to take a big step forward in 2024, Chicago is +3500 to win the World Series.

What is a valuable player prop for the Cubs vs Rangers?

Justin Steele to go Under 14.5 total outs at +120.

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