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GameThread #40: A's at Astros

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The last place Oakland Athletics visit the first place Houston Astros.

These two guys can't carry the entire squad, as much as they try.
These two guys can't carry the entire squad, as much as they try.
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

It appears the many years of mega losing is finally paying dividends for the Houston Astros. Punting a bunch of seasons in favor of testing out youngsters and acquiring draft picks has propelled the Houston Astros to an early lead in the AL West. That being said the division is still anyone's game, despite the double digit deficit the A's have run up on the backs of a 2013 Astros-like bullpen combined with a "Brooks Conrad in the NLDS" level defense.

Last place. I guess it's nice to be the guy sitting around munching on pot brownies the back of the classroom, not actually engaging in anything, floating through the school year.

I am surprised at my own instant loss of angst over A's losses. I guess the dozen or so 1-run losses did it to me. I'm just liking baseball for baseball's sake. I still do have hope that one day Marcus Semien will put together the defense to go with his offense, that Brett Lawrie will put together the offense to go with the defense, that our bullpen will get lucky and allow rocket loud outs that find mitts instead of doubles through the gap. But I guess I am in no rush in terms of wins and losses. Just give me some watchable baseball and let me enjoy this season.

Most disconcerting is the A's home record. They never win at home. 5-14. Seriously guys when we pay to watch you can you at least give us something? The way they're playing, the youngsters are considering hanging up their cleats for good after tee ball and moving on to another sport.

Thankfully the A's have left Oakland for the moment, making their second visit to Minute Maid Park of the season. I always get this gray, dull image in my head when I think about that place, the vapid cavernous quirky for the sake of quirkiness home of the former disAstros. That team of course is making a strong play to shed that moniker this year.

Drew Pomeranz takes the hill against another Astros phenom making his MLB debut, Lance "Cy" McCullers. We know young pitchers making their debut is pretty much a guaranteed 6 shutout innings. Buckle up folks, if we're lucky we could see a ball reach the outfield by the third inning!

Anyways, if we lose in a listless fashion with a final score of 6-2 I will not be the least bit surprised. I would, however, welcome any pleasant surprise if there's one to be had.

Jeremy "Word Count" Koo has a much more informative series preview, in case you are interested. It's really quite amazing that he can muster up the energy to bother with it. Hats off to ya Jeremy. Read it here.

In case you are hopeful about this season, note that this is a prime opportunity to start turning around the A's fortunes and gain some momentum within the division. Give me a series win and I'll be ecstatic. Hell give me 4 runs off of the kid making his MLB debut and I won't even be mad when the gloves and the "relief" pitchers squander it all.

One editorial note. Our SBNation sister blog for the Astros, The Crawfish Boxes, has a new managing editor, Ryan Dunsmore. Dunsmore has been a longtime contributor there so congratulations are in order to our bearded friend. Here's hoping the Dunsmore era starts with the 'Stros limping to a three game sweep at the hands of the A's (nothing personal my man).

Here are your lineups...let's go A's!

Today's Lineups

OAKLAND A'S HOUSTON ASTROS
Coco Crisp - LF Jose Altuve - 2B
Marcus Semien - SS Jonathan Villar - 3B
Josh Reddick - RF George Springer - RF
Billy Butler - DH Evan Gattis - DH
Stephen Vogt - C Preston Tucker - LF
Max Muncy - 1B Chris Carter - 1B
Brett Lawrie - 3B Marwin Gonzalez - SS
Sam Fuld - CF Jason Castro - C
Eric Sogard - 2B Jake Marisnick - CF
Drew Pomeranz - LHP Lance McCullers - RHP