May 10, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak (17) hits a RBI double against the Oakland Athletics during the 1st inning at Safeco FIeld. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

A’s Look To End 5-Game Skid Saturday Night In Seattle: Game Preview


May 10, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak (17) hits a RBI double against the Oakland Athletics during the 1st inning at Safeco FIeld. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Athletics will try to get back to .500 and break a five-game losing streak when they take on the Seattle Mariners tonight at 6:10 PST.

Jarrod Parker will try to shake off a strain in his neck to deliver a solid performance on the mound for a team that sorely needs it. The A’s have been reeling ever since they left New York after a series against the Yankees, and injuries to key contributors like Chris Young, Coco Crisp and Josh Reddick have resulted in a dip in production at the plate after a hot start that had them leading the league in many offensive categories.

Parker has struggled in his seven starts, and his outings have been characterized by inconsistencies that make a little more sense since the revelation of the injury, which he says could be one of the main causes of problems with pitch location. In his last start against Cleveland, Parker gave up four home runs after leaving a few pitches up in the strike zone, but he also struck out seven and allowed only two walks.

Rookie pitcher Brandon Maurer will get the call for the Mariners, and the right-hander gave up six runs on eight hits in his professional debut against Oakland on April 4.  He should have plenty of energy, having skipped his last start to accumulate some extra rest.

Should Seattle win tonight, they’d overtake the A’s for second place in the AL West behind the Texas Rangers. The Mariners have won 9 of their last 13 games and have shown marked improvements on offense after an anemic 2012, with offseason additions Kendrys Morales and Michael Morse playing key roles in that department. Morse hit a home run off of Parker when he last faced the right-hander on April 2.

 

LINEUPS

Oakland Athletics (18-19)

1. J. Jaso DH

2. S. Smith LF

3. J. Lowrie SS

4. Y. Cespedes CF

5. B. Moss RF

6. J. Donaldson 3B

7. D. Barton 1B

8. D. Norris C

9. E. Sogard 2B

 

Seattle Mariners (17-19)

1. M. Saunders CF

2. K. Seager 3B

3. K. Morales DH

4. M. Morse RF

5. J. Smoak 1B

6. R. Ibanez LF

7. D. Ackley 2B

8. K. Shoppach C

9. B. Ryan SS

Tags: AL West Game Preview Oakland Athletics