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Game Thread #94: Athletics vs Astros

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Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

A's continued their nice start to the second half of the season with a 7-4 victory over the Astros last night. While the team is still tied for last place in the division and likely any hopes for a playoff spot are far gone, the A's are finally playing up to the ability that many were hoping the team would play up to from the season's start. There are many other reasons to watch and enjoy A's baseball, however, and the incoming youth movement is one of them. Despite the fact that this team is mostly comprised of unproven players, it is deceptively old, at least in baseball-years, and so the incoming batch of prospects will do lots to amend that fact.

Dillon Overton has gotten the call to make a spot start for the A's tonight, though it is likely that this spot start will be doubling as yet another major league audition for the young left-hander, as a spot in the starting rotation is likely to open up over the next few upcoming days and weeks and Overton is near the tops of the depth-chart at this point in time. Overton's previous audition did not go all too well, as he followed a victory in his major league debut with a stinker of an outing in which he allowed eight runs over three innings while struggling to limit the long ball across both of his starts. The key to his success will be limiting the hard contact tonight, which shouldn't be hard to do against an Astros lineup that definitely doesn't have any power threats.

Today is the day that the A's see what Valencia can do at first base, as well as see what Semien can do out of the fifth spot in the order. The A's are facing a tough lefty in Dallas Keuchel, and so righties McBride and Butler will each be getting a start today as well. Keuchel hasn't quite recovered from his dreadful start to the season, but has been pitching closer to an average line of late. The A's lineup should be successful against him should the lineup continue to do diligence in working the count.

Full lineups for both teams are below. First pitch is at 7:05 Pacific Time.

Today's Lineups

HOUSTON ASTROS OAKLAND A'S
George Springer - RF Coco Crisp - CF
Marwin Gonzalez - 1B Jed Lowrie - 2B
Jose Altuve - 2B Danny Valencia - 1B
Carlos Correa - SS Khris Davis - LF
Luis Valbuena - 3B Marcus Semien - SS
Carlos Gomez - DH Billy Butler - DH
Colby Rasmus - LF Jake Smolinski - RF
Evan Gattis - C Ryon Healy - 3B
Jake Marisnick - CF Matt McBride - C
Dallas Keuchel - LHP Dillon Overton - LHP