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Game Thread #117: A's vs. Minnesota

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"Hmm...Tastes like fail."
"Hmm...Tastes like fail."
Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The A's came within an eyelash of opening up a 5-game lead in the AL West, with the Angels needing runs in the 14th and 19th, and 3 innings from starting pitcher Matt Shoemaker, to stay 4 games back of Oakland.

The A's have beaten the Twins 3 straight in the series and 12 times in a row overall, as they go for a 4-game series sweep today. Standing in their way? Philip Hughes Jason Hammel. Last time out, Hammel made his best start of the 5 with Oakland so far, which is to say that the results were not awful.

Against Tampa Bay Tuesday night, Hammel walked 4 batters in 5⅔ IP, also surrendered 7 hits and relied on Josh Donaldson to turn another smash into a web gem, yet somehow Jason Houdini escaped without allowing a run. In his quest to further lower his 7.15 ERA with the A's, Hammel might want to try "lots of good pitches" today just to mix things up.

Today's lineups come sans Lowrie:

Today's Lineups

MINNESOTA TWINS OAKLAND A'S
Danny Santana - CF Coco Crisp - DH
Brian Dozier - 2B Sam Fuld - CF
Kurt Suzuki - C Josh Donaldson - 3B
Kennys Vargas - 1B Brandon Moss - LF
Josh Willingham - DH Stephen Vogt - 1B
Chris Parmelee - RF Josh Reddick - RF
Eduardo Nunez - 3B John Jaso - C
Eduardo Escobar - SS Alberto Callaspo - 2B
Jordan Schafer - LF Eric Sogard - SS