Game Thread #56: A's vs. Angels

Rollie wheels. - Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Oakland Athletics (33-22) take on the Los Angeles Angels (30-24) in game two of a three-game series at the Oakland Coliseum.

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Homecoming: "The act of returning to your home or to a place that is like your home." The 1974 Oakland Athletics returned beginning yesterday for their two-day celebration of the team winning the A's third consecutive World Championship, joining only one other franchise to have accomplished that feat.

Rollie Fingers (won yesterday's Hall of Fame race), Reggie Jackson, Vida Blue, Sal Bando, Bert Campaneris, Ray Fosse, Darold Knowles, John "Blue Moon" Odom, Joe Rudi, Gene Tenace, Dick Green, Dave Hamilton, Larry Haney, Jim Holt, Ted Kubiak, Billy North, and Herb Washington are reported to be in attendance. Torrey's Tacos is somewhere in the right field bleachers tonight (congratulations on your high school graduation), and I imagine he's hoping he receives a '74 A's thank you honk.

Today's starters are Tyler Skaggs (LHP, 4-2, 3.97) for the Angels against Tommy Millone (LHP, 3-3, 3.50) for the Athletics. Although Milone is hopefully changing his home run propensity on a permanent basis, it should be nice to see him back in his natural "Vampire Milone" state. Let's hope Milone doesn't make Lev Facher look stupid.

Today's Lineups

Los Angeles Angels Oakland Athletics
1. Erick Aybar SS 1. Craig Gentry CF
2. Grant Green LF 2. Jed Lowrie SS
3. Albert Pujols 1B 3. Josh Donaldson 3B
4. David Freese 3B 4. Yoenis Cespedes LF
5. Howie Kendirck 2B 5. Derek Norris C
6. C.J. Cron DH 6. Alberto Callaspo DH
7. Chris Iannetta C 7. Kyle Blanks 1B
8. Kole Calhoun RF 8. Josh Reddick RF
9. Collin Cowgill CF 9. Nick Punto 2B
P. Tyler Skaggs P P. Tommy Milone P

  • No Trout: Mike Trout was a late scratch from the Angels lineup with "back tightness." I prefer 4-6-3's explanation, "He's just knocked out in awe of the '72-'74 A's." Blogfather Nico offered, "Fish have backs? 'Stiffness in the gills' I would understand." Alternatively:
  • Held out: Brandon Moss is out of the lineup after leaving yesterday's game after two plate appearances with a calf injury that has left him limping a bit today, according to John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle. The target for his return is Tuesday's game at Yankee Stadium. Coco Crisp gets the day off, but is available off the bench, Craig Gentry starts in center against the left-hander Skaggs.
  • LeBlanc DFA'd: The Angels elected to designate pitcher Wade LeBlanc for assignment after his 94-pitch, 6⅓ innings in long relief yesterday in order to have a long relief option for the rest of the weekend, according to Alden Gonzalez of mlb.com. Jarrett Grube was called up.

Streaks have become my identity. It's who I've become.

  • Winning the calendar: The A's win last night assured them of the team's 12th consecutive winning month. It is the second longest streak in Oakland history. The record is 13 consecutive months from September 1970 to September 1972.
  • No rookies: The no-rookie streak sits on 55 consecutive games entering today. The next longest is 73 games to start the 1984 campaign.
  • Doolittle do no runs: Sean Doolittle's 13⅓ straight scoreless innings is one out away from exceeding his personal best.
  • Abad: 0-15 since April 19, 2011. It's the longest losing streak in the majors in the last 21 years.
  • Homerless streaks: Kyle Blanks's Memorial Day home run broke a 49-game homerless streak. He's sitting on a three-game hitting streak. Nick Punto's home run on Thursday against the Tigers snaps a 51-game homerless streak.
  • Josh Donaldson: He's on a three-game hitting streak, and with one game left he is tied with 1988 Jose Canseco and 1982 Rickey Henderson for the most runs scored by the end of May, with 47. He has reached based safely in each of his last 45 games as a third baseman, the longest such streak by an Athletics third baseman since at least 1914, and the longest since Alex Rodriguez had a 53-game streak in 2004.
  • Kittenface wheels: Craig Gentry has not been caught stealing now in 20 consecutive attempts.
Streak information courtesy Oakland Athletics Game Notes.
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