Chicago (Arrieta) -130 at Miami (Locke) O/U 9
Miami’s Jeff Locke remains a fringe National League arm; capable of popping for the occasional strong start but very hittable otherwise. He allowed 1 run and fanned seven in his first outing of the year against Arizona but has since failed to record a quality start (3 starts, 14 IP, 5.79 ERA). One of those opponents was the Cubs who patiently picked him apart in a 10-2 victory (4.2 IP, 4 BB, 3 ER). Locke's "metrics" (3.54 FIP) indicate he's pitched better than his 4.58 ERA, but considering the offensive boom MLB is currently enjoying, that ERA is likely who he'll really be over a larger sample size.
Chicago’s Jake Arrieta has been consistently mediocre this season. On May 3, Arrieta's ERA sat at 4.63. A month and a half later, it's 4.64. Virtually every metric has regressed including groundball rate than is nearly 10% lower than last season. Yes, the strikeouts are there (9.9 K's per 9) but without a top-tier defense and more balls hit in the air (that thus leave the yard), the reality is Arrieta is an average NL starter. His last start vs. Pittsburgh was a perfect example of who he is: 4.2 IP, 94 pitches, 7 Ks, 2 ERs. He labored throughout and was fortunate as Gregory Polanco, who hit a laser beam homer earlier in the game, just missed another by less than a foot.
Right in line with most of MLB, Marlins Stadium is 20-14-1 O/U this season including 7-4-2 O/U with totals of 9 or higher. In fact, across MLB, games totaled 9 or higher have gone over nearly 59% of the time. Would look that way tonight with two very hittable starters on the hill.