The A's try to make it two in a row in Arlington, following Zito's gem last night. Joe Blanton squares (or rounds) off against Adam Eaton, whom the A's will face for the first time this season. Blanton is hoping that his peripherals don't catch up to him, as over his last 10 starts, Blanton, in 60.2 IP, has allowed 78 hits and 16 BB--a WHIP of 1.55. Nonetheless, "Kentucky Joe" is 6-4 over those 10 starts.
With the exception of Chad Gaudin, who threw just 7 pitches in finishing up yesterday's game, every member of the A's bullpen has had three consecutive days off, so they are ready to pick up Blanton, figuratively if not literally. In contrast, following Edinson Volquez' 4 inning, 91 pitch Friday extravaganza, the Rangers' bullpen is in its normal state of chewed up, which is a bad combination with the A's style of working long counts. It's one of the reasons I always feel the A's match up well with the Rangers head-to-head.
The A's didn't get any help from Cory Lidle and the Yankees today, so they'll have to help themselves in order to maintain a 5.5 game lead in the division. Tonight's starting lineups: