On paper, this game could be perpetually scoreless. The A's are throwing Jeff Samardzija, the Mariners are throwing Felix Hernandez. Both of those pitchers are very, very good, and Samardzija also has a distinct advantage — he's never faced Seattle, and his opponents won't know what's coming.
The A's are also making the boldest move of all by starting not one, not two, but three catchers — John Jaso at designated hitter, Stephen Vogt in right field, and Derek Norris at...catcher. One of them has to do it.
Coco Crisp is out of Oakland's lineup nursing a sore ankle (and a sore everything, because it's Coco Crisp), while Yoenis Cespedes has the night off, which is just as well, because he hits .200 for his career against King Felix. Josh Donaldson is worse, though — 4-for-23 for his career — and he's in the lineup. Brandon Moss is actually good against Hernandez; he's 9-for-29 with four extra-base hits and no walks all-time.
John Jaso also hits Hernandez well, which isn't surprising given that he used to catch him when he was a Mariner. If anybody on the A's knows what's coming, it's Jaso. He's leading off, while the only other Oakland player with half-decent numbers against Hernandez — Alberto Callaspo is 14-for-47 against him — is hitting 7th and playing first base.
Thankfully, the A's aren't playing National League baseball anymore, so Samardzija and Hernandez get to stick to doing what they do best: pitching.
|OAKLAND A'S||SEATTLE MARINERS|
|John Jaso - DH||Endy Chavez - RF|
|Stephen Vogt - RF||James Jones - CF|
|Josh Donaldson - 3B||Robinson Cano - 2B|
|Brandon Moss - LF||Logan Morrison - DH|
|Jed Lowrie - SS||Kyle Seager - 3B|
|Derek Norris - C||Justin Smoak - 1B|
|A. Callaspo - 1B||Dustin Ackley - LF|
|Nick Punto - 2B||Brad Miller - SS|
|Craig Gentry - CF||Mike Zunino - C|
|Jeff Samardzija - RHP||Felix Hernandez - RHP|
First pitch is at 7:10.