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Game #51: A's @ Indians

Gray, who has earned two consecutive victories and has held opponents to a .156/.204/.244 slash while striking out 19 batters in 13 innings, will look to halt the A's losing streak at 3 games as he faces Trevor Bauer and the Cleveland Indians.

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Today will mark Sonny Gray's 4th career start at Progressive Field. In those previous 3 outings, Gray has pitched to a 2-1 record with a 3.93 ERA and 0.98 WHIP in 18 1/3 innings for the visiting Athletics. It was his lone start in Cleveland last season, though, where he allowed 7 earned runs in 3 1/3 innings that skewed his numbers northward and provided him with his only loss against the Tribe. Prior to that rough outing, Sonny had tossed 15 innings, allowing just 1 run while striking out 15 Cleveland batters en route to two victories.

Sonny is also 2-1 thus far in 2017 and is coming off his best start of the young season while earning a victory in each of his previous two starts against both Boston and Miami. In those victories, Gray allowed a slash line of just .156/.204/.244 to opposing hitters while striking out 19 (versus 3 walks) in 13 innings. His Statcast numbers show that he's also sporting some of his best peripherals of his career.

He'll need another solid start against the Indians if the A's are to bounce back from a disappointing trio of losses that have dropped them to 22-28 on the season and in a last place tie with Seattle. He'll also be facing a Cleveland lineup that has scored 15 runs in their last 2 games and appear to be getting hot at the wrong time for Oakland.

Cleveland will counter with Trevor Bauer (4-4, 6.30 ERA). Although Bauer's ERA is the highest of his career and he's allowing the most hits per 9 (9.5) of his career, his strikeouts (10.6 K/9) are also the highest of his career, which essentially means that Oakland will probably strike out 12 or so times in the first 7 frames. He's also been much better of late; in his 3 most recent starts versus Minnesota, Houston, and Cincinnati, he went 2-0 with a 4.24 ERA in 17 innings while striking out 22.

He'll be facing a lineup full of potential strikeout victims as the A's have struck out an average of 8.92 times per game which is second-only to Tampa in the American League.

Ryon Healy gets his 25th start at DH for the A's, who are currently seeing the worst production from the position in franchise history. He went 3-for-4 with a HR in the ballgame yesterday. Healy is a career 1-for-5 with 1 RBI vs. Bauer.

Some A's have seen good success in their ABs vs. Bauer. Between Yonder Alonso, Khris Davis, and Rajai Davis, the trio have combined to go 9-for-27 with 3 home runs, a triple, 7 RBIs, and 4 walks against the right-hander.

Game time is 3:05 PST.

Today's Lineups

Rajai Davis - CF Jason Kipnis - 2B
Trevor Plouffe - 3B Francisco Lindor - SS
Jed Lowrie - 2B Michael Brantley - LF
Khris Davis - LF Carlos Santana - DH
Yonder Alonso - 1B Edwin Encarnacion - 1B
Ryon Healy - DH Jose Ramirez - 3B
Matt Joyce - RF Bradley Zimmer - CF
Josh Phegley - C Roberto Perez - C
Adam Rosales - SS Daniel Robertson - RF
Sonny Gray - RHP Trevor Bauer - RHP