|MINNESOTA ( CORREIA )|
OAKLAND ( STRAILY )
|973||MINNESOTA||+210||Ov 7.5,-105||+190||Ov 7.5,-105|
|974||OAKLAND||-230||Un 7.5,-115||-210||Un 7.5,-115|
|vs Right-handed Starters||49-65||+1.5||47-62||3.9||0.237||0.304||4.6||0.279||0.334|
|Past 7 Games||2-5||-1.7||3-4||2.3||0.222||0.272||5.9||0.272||0.344|
|vs Right-handed Starters||59-42||+9.6||52-46||4.9||0.254||0.322||3.9||0.245||0.301|
|Past 7 Games||5-2||+2.9||4-3||4.3||0.245||0.320||4.1||0.234||0.290|
|9/9/2013||HERNANDEZ(L)||LA ANGELS||WEAVER(R)||6-3||W||+150||8.5 ov||O||11||12||0||12||9||1|
|9/13/2013||CORREIA(R)||TAMPA BAY||ARCHER(R)||0-3||L||+145||8 un||U||5||5||1||9||6||1|
|9/14/2013||ALBERS(L)||TAMPA BAY||MOORE(L)||0-7||L||+145||7.5 ov||U||4||7||1||10||8||0|
|9/15/2013||HERNANDEZ(L)||TAMPA BAY||PRICE(L)||6-4||W||+200||7.5 un||O||10||5||1||6||8||0|
|9/16/2013||HENDRIKS(R)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||JOHNSON(R)||1-12||L||110||8.5 un||O||8||10||0||13||7||1|
|9/17/2013||PELFREY(R)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||QUINTANA(L)||3-4||L||135||7.5 ov||U||10||10||0||11||11||3|
|9/18/2013||DIAMOND(L)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||DANKS(L)||4-3||W||130||8.5 ov||U||7||4||1||6||4||0|
|9/19/2013||CORREIA(R)||@ OAKLAND||STRAILY(R)|| |
|9/20/2013||ALBERS(L)||@ OAKLAND||COLON(R)|| |
|9/21/2013||HERNANDEZ(L)||@ OAKLAND||PARKER(R)|| |
|9/22/2013||HENDRIKS(R)||@ OAKLAND||GRAY(R)|| |
|9/26/2013|| ||CLEVELAND|| || |
|9/10/2013||PARKER(R)||@ MINNESOTA||HENDRIKS(R)||3-4||L||-175||8.5 un||U||8||4||0||9||8||0|
|9/11/2013||GRAY(R)||@ MINNESOTA||PELFREY(R)||18-3||W||-160||8 ov||O||22||8||0||5||6||1|
|9/12/2013||GRIFFIN(R)||@ MINNESOTA||DIAMOND(L)||8-2||W||-180||8.5 un||O||11||5||0||7||5||1|
|9/13/2013||STRAILY(R)||@ TEXAS||HOLLAND(L)||9-8||W||115||9 un||O||14||10||1||8||9||0|
|9/14/2013||COLON(R)||@ TEXAS||DARVISH(R)||1-0||W||150||8 un||U||4||5||0||7||8||0|
|9/15/2013||MILONE(L)||@ TEXAS||PEREZ(L)||5-1||W||125||9.5 un||U||8||5||0||10||10||1|
|9/16/2013||PARKER(R)||LA ANGELS||WILSON(L)||1-12||L||-130||7 ov||O||6||8||1||15||8||0|
|9/17/2013||GRAY(R)||LA ANGELS||RICHARDS(R)||2-1||W||-155||7.5 un||U||9||11||1||7||10||0|
|9/18/2013||GRIFFIN(R)||LA ANGELS||VARGAS(L)||4-5||L||-175||8 ev||O||8||7||1||5||4||0|
|9/23/2013||GRIFFIN(R)||@ LA ANGELS||RICHARDS(R)|| |
|9/24/2013||STRAILY(R)||@ LA ANGELS||VARGAS(L)|| |
|9/25/2013||COLON(R)||@ LA ANGELS||WEAVER(R)|| |
|MINNESOTA: HITTING: OF BEN REVERE's slap-and-run style fits well in spacious Target Field. He will compete with lefty Chris Parmelee for the starting RF job. OF DENARD SPAN should be over his concussion problems. He works the count well as a steady presence near the top of the order. C JOE MAUER will see more time at first in an attempt to keep him healthy. Offensively, he'll be limited by a pitcher-friendly home park and no support in the lineup. RYAN DOUMIT has a chance to play regularly and stay healthy as a full-time DH and/or backing up Mauer behind the dish. 1B JUSTIN MORNEAU's concussion symptoms came back late last year. It's a bad omen. OF JOSH WILLINGHAM is being relied on to produce runs, but he's going from one pitcher-friendly home park (Oakland) to another. 3B DANNY VALENCIA showed enough power in 2011 to secure an everyday job heading into 2012. Newly signed SS JAMEY CARROLL has done a nice job off the bench, but hasn't been tested in an everyday role. If hamstring problems are still holding him back, 2B ALEXI CASILLA has won the second-base job ahead of disappointing import TSUYOSHI NISHIOKA, who will start the year in the minors. |
STARTING PITCHING: Who would have thought CARL PAVANO would emerge as the picture of consistency and durability? While he's far from a star, the veteran continues to be a rock for Minnesota, throwing strikes and eating innings. SCOTT BAKER got hurt again last year. If he could ever stay healthy, he's the prototype for success at Target Field'lots of strikeouts, few walks, lots of flyouts. The FRANCISCO LIRIANO rollercoaster nosedived again last year. The Twins have gotten so desperate to keep him healthy that they actually let him pitch more over the offseason. He's obviously a huge risk again. BRIAN DUENSING, NICK BLACKBURN and JASON MARQUIS are all the definition of fifth starter. They serve it up, give up a lot of hard-hit balls, and hope they get hit right at their defenders. If Duensing and Blackburn falter, ANTHONY SWARZAK probably pitched well enough last year to get a shot in the rotation. LIAM HENDRICKS, one of the organization's better prospects, would be a slightly more exciting option.
RELIEF PITCHING: Despite his underwhelming performance last year, MATT CAPPS will pitch the ninth inning again because of his 'closer's experience.' He figures to be on an undeservedly long leash. GLEN PERKINS certainly proved he deserves to close. He was Minnesota's best reliever in his first full season in the 'pen. His velocity was up as a short reliever, and the lefty was truly overpowering. If things go sour for the Twins again this season (and it seems likely they will), perhaps they'll get serious about Perkins later this year.
|OAKLAND: HITTING: 2B JEMILE WEEKS may not be a legitimate .300 hitter, but he's still the best option they have at the leadoff spot. C KURT SUZUKI seemingly hits as many line outs as anyone in baseball. He has a solid bat for a catcher and qualifies as a middle-of-the-order option in Oakland. OF JOSH REDDICK is more of a line-drive hitter than a 25-HR guy, and he doesn't yet have the plate discipline to approach .300. 1B BRANDON ALLEN is an all-or-nothing hitter, but his potential for much-needed power should be enough for him to beat out DARIC BARTON. SS CLIFF PENNINGTON has quietly developed into a serviceable regular. With 3B SCOTT SIZEMORE out for the season with a torn ACL, either ERIC SOGARD or JOSH DONALDSON will win the job at third base. Neither player has reached 80 career at-bats yet. Highly-coveted Cuban OF YOENIS CESPEDES inked a four-year deal with Oakland, and will be expected to produced in the heart of the lineup immediately. OF COLLIN COWGILL is undersized, but has shown impressive power in the minors. The DH spot will fall to Allen when Barton is in the lineup. When he's not, it will be filled by such Quadruple-A types as KILA KA'AIHUE and CHRIS CARTER. |
STARTING PITCHING: BRANDON McCARTHY reclamation project worked out nicely. He's an injury risk, but when healthy he's one of baseball's better middle-of-the-rotation arms. BARTOLO COLON pitched better than expected with the Yankees last year (7.4 K/9, 4.00 ERA), and should perform just as well in his new spacious ballpark. DALLAS BRADEN (shoulder) and BRETT ANDERSON (elbow) are both question marks after major surgeries. Braden's return date has been pushed back to early May, while Anderson will might not take the hill until June. The jewel of the Trevor Cahill trade, hard-throwing righty JARROD PARKER has a chance to make a big impact if his arm is recovered from 2009 Tommy John surgery. The Gio Gonzalez trade landed Oakland TOMMY MILONE and BRAD PEACOCK, both of whom are coming off impressive minor-league seasons. They'll compete for rotation spots this spring. TYSON ROSS could get a few starts, but he's gotten very hittable over the past year. They're in no hurry to start the arbitration clock of top prospect SONNY GRAY, but he should make some late-season starts.
RELIEF PITCHING: With Andrew Bailey gone, righty GRANT BALFOUR (2.47 ERA, 1.03 WHIP) will get the first chance to close games. Though his occasional bouts with command issues make him a risk. If Balfour falters, BRIAN FUENTES will get the next look because of his ninth-inning experience and strong second half of 2011 . . . Long a favorite inside the organization, injury-prone righty JOEY DEVINE has long been considered a future closer and should get some late-innings duties. The highest upside option for a future closer is 25-year-old righty FAUTINO DE LOS SANTOS. He has overpowering stuff but his command comes and goes.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (MINNESOTA-OAKLAND) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Twins-Athletics Preview* =========================
By JORDAN GARRETSON STATS Writer
Minnesota (64-86) at Oakland (89-62), 10:05 p.m. EDT
Though they come off a disappointing result, the Oakland Athletics figure to have a good chance to clinch their second straight division title by the end of their four-game home series with the struggling Minnesota Twins.
Dan Straily tries to win a fifth straight start and help the A's inch closer to the AL West crown in Thursday night's opener.
The Athletics (89-63) have won 17 of 23 but come off a 5-4, 11-inning home loss to the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday. Josh Hamilton's two-run game-tying homer in the ninth accounted for Grant Balfour's third blown save, and Hamilton later put the Angels ahead with a sacrifice fly.
Balfour had set an Oakland record earlier this season by converting his 41st straight save opportunity, and his 38 this year are the most by an A's pitcher since Keith Foulke's 43 in 2003.
His cause wasn't helped by Josh Donaldson's error on a sacrifice bunt, which helped led to the decisive run.
"We've had tough losses and dramatic wins," manager Bob Melvin said. "You just put this away and come back expecting to win."
It should be easy to do that considering Oakland outscored Minnesota 29-9 while taking two of three at Target Field last week. Yoenis Cespedes was 5 for 11 with six RBIs in the series and is hitting .457 with 14 RBIs in nine career games against the Twins.
The Athletics' magic number to clinch the AL West is five over Texas.
The struggling Rangers, who suffered a 4-3, 12-inning loss Wednesday at Tampa Bay, wrap up their four-game series with the Rays on Thursday night before heading to Kansas City for a three-game weekend set.
Straily (10-7, 4.11 ERA) has won his last four starts, the longest streak of his young career. He's posted a 1.90 ERA in those outings since matching a season high by allowing six runs in a loss at Baltimore on Aug. 23.
Although the right-hander allowed only two runs and two hits over 5 2-3 innings at Texas on Friday, he still seeks better command after issuing four walks and hitting a batter in the 9-8 victory.
"I was just missing," said Straily, who has never faced Minnesota. "Instead of being super-aggressive, I was trying to hit spots."
Oakland is the first of three contending teams the Twins will face in their final 11 games. The remaining slate also includes contests with Detroit and Cleveland.
"These guys get a taste of that," manager Ron Gardenhire said, referring to his team matching up against clubs involved in the playoff chase. "It's not like our goal is not to knock the other team out. Our goal is to go and compete with these guys and give it everything we have. We owe it to baseball."
Minnesota (65-86) thwarted a three-game sweep with a 4-3 road win over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday, just their fourth victory in 14 games.
Scheduled starter Kevin Correia (9-12, 4.31) has dropped his last two starts while surrendering eight runs over 12 innings, though he also received a total of one run of support.
He's 1-1 with a 3.10 ERA in six games - three starts - versus the A's, last facing them in 2009.
|Last Updated: 10/20/2014 8:26:57 AM EST|