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Open Game Thread: Game 82 - A's at Angels

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Well now, what better place to start the second half of the season than against the team that's currently standing in between you and the playoffs? I can't think of one.

The A's travel to Anaheim to take on the Angels. They put Greg Smith on the mound with his 4-6 record and 3.69 ERA. He faces Jon Garland who is 7-4 with a 4.05 ERA. Garland has had two starts against the A's this year and one was very good, one was very bad. One start on April 28th at Angel Stadium, he allowed seven earned runs to the A's. Then earlier this month he went seven innings and allowed only two earned runs. Garland had a terrible April, an amazing May and has had a decent June. Hopefully the A's can cap off his month by adding another seven earned runs to his stat line.

Smith has also started twice against the Angels this year. He went eight innings in his first start only allowing two ER. He went sixth and a third innings earlier this month, allowing five runs, four earned, against the Halos.

Here is an interesting note from the MLB game preview.

Geren used 64 different lineups in Oakland's first 81 games.

I don't know about you, but I love this. The A's don't really have guys who should be hitting in certain spots in the lineup. So play with it until you figure out where people work best.

The A's sit four and a half games back with 81 games to play. The second half run starts tonight. Ryan Sweeney is back in the A's lineup tonight as is Eric Chavez. Here is the A's lineup:

Ryan Sweeney
Suzuki
Cust
Chavez
Crosby
Gonzalez
Ellis
Hannahan
Barton

So Barton has sunk to last in the lineup. Probably a wise choice by Geren. Good to see Sweeney back at the top of that order.

The Angels go with this group:

Figgins
Aybar
Guerrero
Hunter
Kendrick
Matthews
Rivera
Kotchman
Napoli

The guy who scares me in this lineup more than anyone else outside of Vlad is Kendrick. He's just such a good hitter. Hopefully Smith can keep the lineup in check.

LET'S GO A'S!!!!!!!