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Open Thread: Game 74 - A's vs. Mets

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The A's are used to being the last game on the scoreboard, playing after teams have gone to bed. Today, they mix it up by starting with a 10:10 a.m. first pitch here on the West Coast, in an attempt to shake the cobwebs from the team's bats.

Even after yesterday's 1-0 contest, and Friday's 9-1 loss, both at the hand of these same Mets, the A's have outscored their opponents 316-274 not halfway through the season's campaign, a 42 run margin which nets out to approximately .6 runs per game more for the A's. This is true, both at home, and on the road, as the A's are scoring 4.58 Runs per game to Opponents' 3.97 in road contests this year, and 4.23 Runs per game to Opponents' 3.64 at home.

As the above notes show, the Coliseum's effect on the team's hitting unfairly marks this team as worse on offense than reality. On the road, the team is middle of the pack in the AL, 7th in batting average, 8th in home runs, 9th in slugging percentage, not to overlook the team's being 2nd in on base percentage. (Source)

Today, the A's "average" hitting club and "superior" pitching staff look to pad the runs scored differential column with Joe Kennedy (2-4, 3.62) facing off against John Maine (7-4, 2.90 ERA). Maine's gaudy win-loss record includes a 5-0 start to the season and a solid 72-38 K/BB ratio. Maine has gone at least five innings in all starts this season, and has only given up more than 3 runs on 2 occasions. The A's will try to make that three, with a little luck.

Lineups:

Your 2007 Oakland Athletics
Stewart (LF)
Kotsay (CF)
Swisher (1B)
Chavez (3B)
Ellis (2B)
CUST! (RF)
Crosby (SS)
Kendall (C)
Kennedy (P)

Their 2007 New York Mets
Reyes (SS)
Lo Duca (C)
Beltran (CF)
Wright (3B)
Easley (LF)
Green (1B)
Valentin (2B)
Gomez (LF)
Maine (P)