Well, after the month of July and its many, many sweeps, I never thought I'd be so glad to see a rubber game in a series, but here we are. The A's stormed to a much-needed victory last night over the Angels, reclaiming second place in the Division and keeping the tie in the Wild Card with the red-hot Tigers and Orioles. The Wild Card race is crazy, and the A's need to continue their great pitching if they want to even discuss the playoffs. And I'm guessing that if we can't win the Division, we should probably hope that the Angels do instead, since no one wants a one-game playoff against the Los Angeles Angels and their pitching staff.
The Angels will send just another ace to the mound in this afternoon's contest as Zach Greinke faces off against Dan Straily, in a game that will likely favor the pitching. No pressure for Straily in his second Major League start. "Hey kid, good luck in start #2; you're only battling for the A's first chance at the postseason in six years against the hated division rivals; no worries."
What would have been Straily's first win was given away by Ryan Cook, who blew a 3-run save opportunity to send the game to extra innings last Friday. He will have a much tougher time with a win today; facing the ace Greinke.
Here are your lineups (I think this is the very best we can do, and welcome back, Cliff Pennington!):
LET'S GO OAK-LAND!