The Oakland Athletics have a chance to go for their seventh win in a row and sweep their regional rivals when they take this afternoon against the San Francisco Giants. Right-hander A.J. Griffin will get the start for the A’s, while southpaw Barry Zito will try to remain undefeated at home on the season for the Giants.
Griffin is off to a solid 5-3 start with a 3.84 ERA in 10 appearances for Oakland. His seven inning gem against the Texas Rangers on May 13, in which he struck out eight and allowed one earned run on six hits, came at the perfect time for a club that was reeling after a tough 10-game road trip. The A’s have gone 11-3 since that game.
It’s all been coming together for the A’s as the starting rotation seems to have regained their form from 2012 and the offense has started to click. Over the past week, the A’s are hitting .286/.381/.471 with 40 RBIs and eight home runs.
Yoenis Cespedes is on an 11-game hitting streak, the longest of his career, and last night he knocked in the first run of the game on a triple in the first inning. Nate Freiman has also been productive as of late, and he knocked in three runs after entering the game as a pinch hitter in the top of the fifth yesterday. He’ll bat fifth today and play first base. Josh Donaldson is becoming a force at the plate and at the hot corner, and he’s garnering serious consideration for an All-Star appearance with his fantastic play this season.
It’ll be another lineup filled with right-handed hitters Wednesday. Oakland has a .842 OPS with right-handed batters going up against left-handed pitchers, and they’ll get a chance to do some damage against a former Athletic in Zito, who has looked much improved from years past this season.
1. C. Crisp CF
2. J. Lowrie 2B
3. Y. Cespedes LF
4. J. Donaldson 3B
5. N. Freiman 1B
6. C. Young RF
7. D. Norris C
8. A. Rosales SS
9. A. Griffin P