A look at opposition pitching

BBQed glove is finger lickin' good - Thearon W. Henderson

What kind of pitching have the A's faced during their recent cold streak? I take a look at it in this article.

Much has been made of the A's slowdown after their hot 12-4 start. What's more, the A's also lost some significant talent to the DL after the 19-inning marathon win against the Angels, making it a pyrrhic victory, of sorts.

That said, it also seems clear that the A's have faced some pretty good starting pitching during that time. Some of those good pitchers they have beat (C.C. Sabathia), some of them are doing well now after not having much of a track record of recent success (Scott Kazmir), and some totally owned the A's and are good (Chen). Taken as a whole, though, let's see just how good the starters the A's have faced recently are doing.

Here are those starters listed in order of how the A's faced them, with their 2013 ERA- and FIP- next to them. To remind you, ERA- and FIP- show how these pitchers are doing relative to the league in those stats. Lower numbers are better.

Alex Cobb - 79/98

Jeremy Helickson - 135/124

Roberto Hernandez - 114/115

Felix Doubront - 149/68

Alfredo Aceves - 202/185

Jon Lester - 64/78

Jason Hammel - 117/115

Wei-Yin Chen - 73/86

Chris Tillman - 90/108

Miguel Gonzalez - 109/129

Tommy Hanson - 98/146

Garrett Richards - 122/96

C.J. Wilson - 99/110

C.C. Sabathia - 77/94

Phil Hughes - 106/101

Andy Pettitte - 91/103

Ubaldo Jimenez - 140/120

Zach McAllister - 68/103

Justin Masterson - 79/80

Scott Kazmir - 123/119

Hisashi Iwakuma - 46/75

Brandon Maurer - 156/145

Joe Saunders - 144/133

Justin Grimm - 98/97

It's kind of a mixed bag here. Of the pitchers who are doing clearly worse than league-average, the A's were beat by Helickson, Hernandez, Hammel, Jimenez, Kazmir, and Saunders. On the other hand, look at the names there in general: Jon Lester. Wei-Yin Chen. C.C. Sabathia. Justin Masterson. Hisashi Iwakuma. Those are legit pitchers, if not aces in the American League.

Certainly, if the A's hope to remain in contention, they need to beat all comers. It may be that guys Jimenez and Kazmir are closer to the pitchers they once were and not their recent history, but that doesn't matter. Just remember, though, that it's not like the A's have stumbled though pitching the likes of Alfredo Aceves' during this cold streak.

Tonight's game thread will be brought to you by Lev Facher and sponsored by nachos, the official concession item of Bartolo Colon starts. 90% fastballs and molten cheese product will come to you starting at 7:05 PM.

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