Cubs vs. Dodgers odds, line: MLB picks, predictions for Jon Lester's return from model on 14-5 roll

The Chicago Cubs have recovered in a big way from a poor early-season start and now look to complete a three-game sweep of the visiting Los Angeles Dodgers. The Cubs (12-10), who opened the season 2-7, have won 10 of their last 13 and are showing signs of breaking out at the plate, while the Dodgers (15-11) have lost two in a row following a stretch that saw them win seven of eight. First pitch on Thursday is set for 2:20 p.m. ET from Wrigley Field. The Dodgers lead the all-time series 1,052-1,042, but the Cubs have won three straight and six of nine in the series. The latest Dodgers vs. Cubs odds show Los Angeles favored at -120 on the money line (risk $120 to win $100), while the over-under for total runs scored is eight. Before making any Dodgers vs. Cubs picks of your own, you need to see what the SportsLine Projection Model has to say. 

This model, which simulates every game 10,000 times, has raked in the winnings for those following its picks in multiple sports. It is off to a profitable start on all its A-rated MLB picks, entering Week 5 on a strong 14-5 run. Anyone who has followed it is way up. 

Now the model has dialed in on Dodgers vs. Cubs. We can tell you it's leaning over, and it also says one side of the money line has all the value. You can only see that pick at SportsLine. 

The model knows that left-hander Jon Lester (1-0, 2.57 ERA) returns from the injured list and will get his first start since April 8 on Thursday. In 14 innings of work, Lester has allowed just four earned runs on 13 hits. He has allowed three home runs and six walks, while striking out 14. Despite the dismal start to the season, Chicago pitchers have been solid lately and hold a statistical edge over the Dodgers in several categories, including ERA (4.10 to 4.24) and hits allowed (183 to 200). 

Shortstop Javier Baez (.312) has been on fire in the Cubs' lineup and has six multi-hit games over the past nine. He is 16-for-37 (.432) with four home runs and 11 RBIs during that span. Third baseman Kris Bryant (.238) and first baseman Anthony Rizzo (.205) have shown signs of busting out of their early-season slumps as well. Bryant was 2-for-3 with a double Wednesday, while Rizzo has a five-game hitting streak. 

But just because the Cubs have won the first two games of the series does not mean they will provide value on the money line.

Right-hander Ross Stripling (1-1, 3.07 ERA) gets the start for Los Angeles. He's coming off a solid outing in Milwaukee, going 4 2/3 innings, allowing four hits, two earned runs, three walks and eight strikeouts. For the season, he has given up nine walks while striking out 26. 

First baseman Cody Bellinger continues to hit at a torrid pace as he recorded his 12th multi-hit game of the season Wednesday, going 2-for-3 with a home run and two RBIs. He is 9-for-22 on the current six-game road trip, including a double, three home runs and seven RBIs. Shortstop Corey Seager (.276) has a five-game hitting streak and is 8-for-23 with two doubles on the road trip. 

So who wins Dodgers vs. Cubs? And which side of the money line has all the value? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Cubs vs. Dodgers money line you should be all over, all from the advanced model that has crushed its MLB picks, and find out.

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