This game was supposed to feature a pitching matchup of Sonny Gray against Clayton Kershaw. It was going to be an AL Cy Young contender battling the two-time defending (and three-time overall) NL winner. But these are the 2015 A's we're watching and we aren't allowed to have nice things, so instead Sonny pitched last night in the poopy finale in Baltimore. On the bright side, we get an equally enthralling matchup -- Felix vs. Kershaw! Oh wait, that's Felix Doubront. Dammit A's.
Kershaw's stats are best measured not in ERA or WAR, but rather in Cy Youngs. He won in 2011. He was second in 2012. He won in 2013. He won in 2014. He's a front-runner in 2015. In his last seven starts, he has an 0.82 ERA and five scoreless outings of eight innings or more, so he's also on absolute freaking fire. Oh, and he's lefty. He could legitimately throw a no-hitter tonight.
Doubront's stats are best not measured at all. Pretend he's a rookie with a lot of upside and something to prove. It's not true, but you will enjoy this game more. In reality, he is bad at pretty much everything on the mound. This is about as lopsided of a pitching matchup as you can have in Major League Baseball.
And yet, it's baseball. You never know. Kershaw has six losses this year. Someone has beaten him. Maybe Mark Canha homers and all of Billy Butler's at-bats come with two outs on the board. Maybe Doubront is accidentally good for an evening. Stranger things have happened.
|LOS ANGELES DODGERS||OAKLAND A'S|
|Jimmy Rollins - SS||Billy Burns - CF|
|Enrique Hernandez - 2B||Sam Fuld - LF|
|Justin Turner - 3B||Danny Valencia - 3B|
|Adrian Gonzalez - 1B||Josh Phegley - C|
|Scott Van Slyke - LF||Mark Canha - 1B|
|Yasiel Puig - RF||Billy Butler - DH|
|Alex Guerrero - DH||Josh Reddick - RF|
|A.J. Ellis - C||Marcus Semien - SS|
|Joc Pederson - CF||Eric Sogard - 2B|
|Clayton Kershaw - LHP||Felix Doubront - LHP|