A’s Go For 11th Win Of The Season With Griffin On The Mound: Game Preview


Apr 11, 2013; Anaheim, CA, USA; Oakland Athletics starting pitcher A.J. Griffin (64) during the game against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Athletics will try to win their fifth game in as many tries against the Houston Astros when the two teams face off this evening at 7:05 PST.

A.J. Griffin will try to continue a stellar start to his young career, and he’ll go for his third win after accumulating a 1.93 ERA with five strikeouts and 12 hits over his first two starts.  Brad Peacock, who was traded by the A’s this offseason to Houston along with Chris Carter and Max Stassi for Jed Lowrie and Fernando Rodriguez, will pitch for the Astros.  Peacock allowed three hits and two runs over 4.1 innings in his first start of the season against Oakland April 5, a game Houston would go on to lose 8-3.

The Astros are now on a three-game losing streak after winning three in a row and breaking out of a funk at the plate against the Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Angels.  As lopsided as the A’s victories against them have been, the Astros are certainly capable of ruffling a few feathers in the AL West this season, and that makes them dangerous to a team in contention like the A’s, who will need every win they can muster to win the division outright.

Those wins will be much easier to come by if Oakland can continue to hit the way they have over the first few weeks of the season.  They jumped on Astros starter Erik Bedard early Monday night, drawing three walks to lead the game off and scoring six runs in a first inning that would essentially decide the game.  Shortstop Jed Lowrie knocked in four runs, Nate Freiman hit his first career home run, and center fielder Coco Crisp went 1-for-3 to extend his hitting streak to 10 games.

Tommy Milone obviously played a prominent role in last night’s win as well, pitching 6.2 innings and striking out six with only two runs allowed to spearhead the effort.  If Griffin can follow the same formula, the A’s will be on their way to their third sweep of the season.

Shane Peterson was called up from Triple-A Sacramento to take the place of Brandon Moss at first base.  Moss will be on paternity leave the next two games.  Peterson is hitting .410 with seven RBI and a .558 on-base percentage with the Rivercats in 2013.

In off-the-field news, Scott Sizemore underwent surgery on his torn ACL today, and the A’s have announced that it was successful.  The famed orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews performed the procedure, and hopefully this is the first step in a speedy recovery for Sizemore, who sustained the injury in his second start of the season against the Angels on April 9.