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Game Thread #42: A's vs. Yankees

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Looking to extend a four game win streak, the Athletics open their one and only home series of the 2016 regular season vs. the Yankees - a four game set - in an unusual Thursday night home contest.

Danny V
Danny V
Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

After a brutal stretch through Baltimore and Boston, the A's took two of three in Tampa Bay - largely on the back of Danny Valencia's HR bat - and followed up with a three game sweep of the AL West rival Rangers - largely on the back of Khris Davis' HR bat. Needless to say, the last six games have been a lot more fun than the prior six.

The A's continue their home stand vs. a Yankees team that comes in at 17-22 and at the bottom of the AL East standings. The A's have already played the Yankees three times in their sole trip to the Bronx - and the A's secured the sweep in that set - so the Athletics hope to continue a pair of streaks in tonight's contest.

On the hill for the A's is RHP Kendall Graveman. After a strong start to the season in his first three outings, where he allowed a combined four runs in the three starts, Graveman has allowed at least four runs per outing in his last four starts, which has ballooned his ERA from 2.04 to 5.84. Graveman's 1-5 record includes four losses in each of these last four outings. It goes without saying that the A's need more from Graveman, as he attempts to follow up three straight quality outings from Athletics pitchers (coming via Sean Manaea, Jesse Hahn and Rich Hill). Graveman's sole credited win on the year was in NY against the Yankees, where he went 6.1 innings and gave up just one run on three hits and three walks, to go along with a season-high eight K's.

The Yankees counter with big RHP Ivan Nova. Nova, who started the year in the bullpen, brings a 2-1 record and a 3.70 ERA into the contest. Nova pitched one inning of relief against the A's in NY, with an uneventful 1-2-3 inning in a Yankees loss. The start will be just the 3rd start of the year for Nova.

Today's Lineups

NEW YORK YANKEES OAKLAND A'S
Jacoby Ellsbury - CF Coco Crisp - LF
Brett Gardner - LF Billy Burns - CF
Carlos Beltran - DH Josh Reddick - RF
Brian McCann - C Danny Valencia - 3B
Starlin Castro - 2B Khris Davis - DH
Chase Headley - 3B Stephen Vogt - C
Dustin Ackley - 1B Yonder Alonso - 1B
Didi Gregorius - SS Marcus Semien - SS
Aaron Hicks - RF Chris Coghlan - 2B
Ivan Nova - RHP Kendall Graveman - RHP

The A's lineup features a recent power surge, with 14 HRs in their last six games. As noted above, Valencia and Davis have led the charge, with Valencia having all 6 of his HRs in that 6 game span and Davis having 5. With the A's riding a 4 game win streak, Vegas has the A's slight favorites at -113 behind Graveman. We definitely look to see if Kendall can get back to digging opposing batters' graves, rather than digging the A's a hole.

Poll

Will Graveman rebound on the hill?

This poll is closed

  • 18%
    Yes, he will be lights out
    (7 votes)
  • 63%
    He will be OK and give them a chance
    (24 votes)
  • 18%
    Batters are going to need to really rock
    (7 votes)
38 votes total Vote Now