958 CHICAGO CUBS -1.5 (-123) vs 957 SDP

Analysis: The Cubs' run line performance this season has been extraordinary and represents a very attractive option to laying the huge prices the Cubs are forced to lay and likely will be for the rest of the season. Of their 24 wins to date, 21 of them have been by 2 runs or more. That's a success rate of 87.5 percent. Even when highly priced to win the game straight the Run Line price has been modest in comparison. Tonight, for example, the game is priced at roughly minus 240 with the minus 1 1/2 runs priced at roughly minus 110. To put things in better perspective, as I write about in this week's edition of Gaming Today, the Cubs have a runs differential of plus 102, scoring 184 runs (most in the majors) while allowing just 82 (least in the majors). That differential of plus 102 works out to an average of more than 3 runs per game! Jon Lester has started well this season, pitching to a 1.57 ERA and 1.05 WHIP in 6 starts (averaging 6 2/3 innings per start). San Diego's Cesar Vargas has also put up solid stats in his 3 MLB starts but will face on of baseball's best lineups. Part of the handicap was that last night San Diego was playing less than 24 hours after having been on the west coast for almost 3 straight weeks. Whereas that is not the case tonight as the Padres will have had an extra 24 hours to become acclimated to the time change the extra 24 hours will also benefit the Cubs and have their bullpen even fresher so the play stands as solid as was the case Monday night.