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Game Thread #41: Oakland Athletics vs. Chicago White Sox

It's a hot, hot day in California, which is perfect for the hot, hot Oakland Athletics, who went from their lowest low of the season last week to on fire this week as the green and gold behind Tommy Milone go for a second consecutive series sweep and their 7th victory in a row. Standing in their way are the Chicago White Sox and Andre Rienzo, making his first start against the A's.

Jason O. Watson

What a difference a week makes, no? At exactly this time last week, I was opening a game thread before the doubleheader that closed the four-game Seattle series, and the A's were struggling mightily. They would drop the first game of the day in spectacularly awful fashion, but would rebound to win the second, and save themselves from a series sweep. Since then, the A's have played five more games, and have won them all, and are looking for their second consecutive series sweep; and the Nationals and White Sox are no slouch.

Helped by a resurgence of Josh "Careless Whisper" Reddick at home, and a whole lot of power from a whole lot of players, including both catchers and Brandon Moss, mixed with almost an afterthought of amazing pitching performances, strung together day after day, the A's are red-hot at home this week, and look to end on a high note before embarking on the road trip from hell.

It's impossible to choose between Jaso and Norris right now, so both are playing in today's game; Norris will catch, and Jaso will DH and lead off, providing a nice fill-in for the still-injured Coco Crisp. Not that the A's don't miss Coco, but they are winning every game they are playing lately. After an off-day, Donaldson will be back hitting third, Gentry will cover center field, and Sogard will be the second base of choice, while Moss holds steady at first.

Tommy Milone will take the mound for the A's today, coming off his career best start, an eight inning, two-hit (generously, it probably should have been a one-hit) performance, striking out seven en route to the win. He will be up against Andre Rienzo, whom the A's have never seen.

Let's keep it going, shall we?

Here are your lineups:

Today's Lineups

Gordon Beckham - 2B John Jaso - DH
Conor Gillaspie - 3B Jed Lowrie - SS
Jose Abreu - DH Josh Donaldson - 3B
Dayan Viciedo - LF Brandon Moss - 1B
Alexei Ramirez - SS Yoenis Cespedes - LF
Paul Konerko - 1B Josh Reddick - RF
Tyler Flowers - C Derek Norris - C
Moises Sierra - RF Eric Sogard - 2B
A. De Aza - CF Craig Gentry - CF