The Oakland A’s are back at home tonight, after a tough 10-game road trip which saw them face three AL East teams. The A’s were bats were hot, scoring 60 runs which enabled them to finish the trip .700 (7-3). Although they only managed to beat the league-leading New York Yankees in once of three games in the series, they went on to defeat the Red Sox twice and sweep the Blue Jays in four straight games.
The A’s are hosting a team who are also enduring a good run of form. The Seattle Mariners are 2.5 games ahead of the A’s in the AL West, and trail the division leaders Houston by just 2. After rallying late last night, they head into this divisional match up with three straight wins. The A’s and Mariners have met six times this year, with the Mariners taking four wins from those games – both series were previously in Seattle.
Both teams have veteran pitchers starting for them and both have had their fair share of teams they’ve played for. Mike Leake is at his fourth team since he entered the league in 2010, whilst Trevor Cahill is back in Oakland after making his debut for them in 2009. In nine starts this year Leake has given up 34 runs (6.00 ERA), has the worst WHIP number of his career (1.529) and his worst K/9 rate (6.0) since 2015. Compare this to Cahill, who is having a solid start to the year. Although he’s only started in five contests, Cahill’s 2.79 ERA is up there with the best of his career, his WHIP (1.00) is currently the 2nd best of his career and his K/9 rate currently sits at a very respectable 9.9.
Although the starting pitchers have had different starts to this campaign, both teams have very similar team pitching stats in ERA and WHIP. The Mariners and A’s also have a similar BA, and are both in the top 10 in the league for OBP and SLG.
However, since the teams last met, the Mariners had Robinson Cano – who has since been banned for 80-games after testing positive for a banned substance. Nelson Cruz should also be back in the lineup, but has been nursing a bruised foot and was hit by a pitch on Saturday which prevented him from playing in Sunday’s game against Detroit. The A’s might not have Khris Davis available who is also day-to-day with an injury to his groin. Both are big bats either team would miss having if either is unavailable for the game.
Overall, the Oakland Athletics have really impressed me of late. Over the past week they’re among the hottest bats in the league and tonight they face a pitcher who has struggled to put in a solid outing in his last five starts. Expect the A’s to continue this good run tonight their bats to knock Mike Leake around.
Prediction: Oakland A’s to beat the Seattle Mariners.