The 2015 regular season is finally over, and the top three teams in the majors are all from the NL Central Division. The Pittsburgh Pirates (98-64, +21.35 betting units) will host the Chicago Cubs (97-65, +17.51 units) in the NL Wild Card Game this Wednesday night; TBS provides the television coverage starting at 8:08 PM ET.
Both teams will be sending their aces out to the mound. For the Pirates, it’ll be Gerrit Cole (2.66 FIP), who finished third on the MLB money list with 10.43 betting units on a team record of 23-9. The Cubs respond with this year’s top earner and possibly the top Cy Young candidate from the NL, Jake Arrieta (2.35 FIP). He’s up 13.73 units after leading Chicago to a 25-8 record.
On the season, the Cubs rank ahead of the Pirates in WAR for both hitting and relief pitching; although Pittsburgh’s bullpen has risen to No. 1 in the majors over the past 30 days. The Pirates had the better overall run differential at +101 to Chicago’s +81. Sadly, breakout third baseman Jung Ho Kang (.816 OPS) is out for Pittsburgh after suffering a torn knee and a broken leg in late September.