Marlins vs Cubs Prediction, Picks, and Odds for Tonight’s MLB Game

The Cubs' offense has been running hot to start the season and gets a favorable matchup against a struggling A.J. Puk tonight. Our MLB betting picks expect them to score early and often in what should be a second straight win.

Apr 18, 2024 • 13:21 ET • 4 min read
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This article contains predictions for an old game!

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The Chicago Cubs will look to continue their strong play to start the season as they host the struggling Miami Marlins at Wrigley Field on Thursday night.

The Cubs come in having won four of their last five games and are favorites in the MLB odds over a Marlins team that is tied for the worst record in the National League. 

Bookmakers have set a low total for tonight’s game despite questionable starting pitching on both sides. We’ll break down the matchup in our free MLB picks and Marlins vs. Cubs predictions for April 18. 

Marlins vs Cubs prediction

My best bet
Over 7.5 (-115 at FanDuel)

My analysis
The Chicago Cubs have come out of the gate swinging, putting up some of the best offensive numbers in the league so far. Chicago’s .742 OPS is merely a bit above average, but it has scored 5.61 runs per game, the fourth-best mark in the majors this season. 

Even with Seiya Suzuki (.305, three HRs) on the injured list, Chicago has plenty of weapons in its lineup. Michael Busch has been great to start the year, hitting .317 with six homers and 13 RBI in his first 18 games. Cody Bellinger, Christopher Morel, and Dansby Swanson all have multiple homers in the early going as well, while designated hitter Garrett Cooper is hitting .348 with a 1.009 OPS. 

The Cubs lineup has another good matchup tonight against Miami Marlins starter A.J. Puk. Puk has put up a 5.91 ERA in his three starts this year while going 0-3 and failing to get through five innings in any of them. What’s especially concerning for Puk — who had been a solid starter in his last two seasons — is the fact that he's allowed 11.8 walks per nine innings, putting his WHIP at an uncompetitive 2.438. 

The Marlins have been less than impressive on offense and as a team. Miami is playing a bit better as of late — all four of their wins have come in their last 10 games after starting 0-9 — but it's still scoring just 3.68 runs per game, tied for the second-worst mark in the National League. 

However, the Marlins lineup could have some chances to break out today. The Cubs are putting Jameson Taillon on the mound to make his first start of the year as he comes off a stint on the injured list with a strained back.

Taillon was just fair last year, putting up a 4.84 ERA while allowing a career-worst 1.6 home runs per nine innings. The Cubs are hoping for more out of the 32-year-old this year, though he hasn’t had a strong season since 2018 with the Pirates.

With Taillon making his first start of the year, it’s hard to know if he’ll be sharp. Even if the Marlins can’t get much done on offense, the Cubs could beat the 7.5-run total on their own against Puk. Give me the Over.

Marlins vs Cubs same-game parlay (SGP)

Over 7.5

Cubs moneyline

Nico Hoerner to record a run

I like these teams to combine to score enough runs to beat a low total, but I think the Cubs will have the best of the action against Puk.

That’s why I’m adding a Cubs moneyline bet to my SGP. We’ll also take Nico Hoerner to score a run. He's scored 13 times this year and has done so in six of his last nine games overall.

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

Marlins vs Cubs odds

Marlins vs Cubs live odds

Marlins vs Cubs opening odds

  • Run line: Miami +1.5 (-175) | Chicago -1.5 (+135)
  • Moneyline: Miami +120 | Chicago -150
  • Over/Under: Over 8 | Under 8

Marlins vs Cubs spread and Over/Under analysis

  • Chicago opened as a -150 favorite in tonight’s game. The consensus line has moved to around Cubs -160, with the Marlins offered at +140 at some sites.

  • The Cubs have been great for bettors, winning nearly six units on the moneyline this season, while Miami has lost an astounding 10 units in their first 19 games.

  • The total for tonight’s game opened at 8. The Over/Under has moved to 7.5 at most books, with the Over at -115 and -105 available on the Under.

  • The Over has an 11-8 edge in Miami’s games this season, while it has gone an even 9-9 when the Cubs play.

Marlins vs Cubs trend

The Over is 2-1 in A.J. Puk’s three starts this season. Find more MLB betting trends for Marlins vs. Cubs

Marlins vs Cubs game info

Location: Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL
Date: Thursday, 4-18-2024
First pitch: 7:40 p.m. ET
TV: Bally Sports Florida, MARQ
Marlins starting pitcher: A.J. Puk
(0-3, 5.91 ERA)
Cubs starting pitcher: Jameson Taillon
(0-0, 0.00 ERA)

Marlins vs Cubs latest injuries

Marlins vs Cubs weather

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