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Game #73: A's vs Astros

Oakland looks to avoid a 4-game sweep against the Astros

Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

After a four-game sweep of the New York Yankees and their first sweep of the season, the A's are now on the verge of being swept themselves. They'll also be competing without long-time fan favorite Stephen Vogt, who was designated for assignment this morning. Vogt, who hadn't played in the outfield since 2014, made four consecutive outs in last night's game in left field while going 0-for-1 from the plate with 1 RBI in what is likely to be his final at-bat as an Athletic.

When Vogt [hopefully] returns to Oakland on his new team (whoever that may be), he will probably have the biggest and loudest standing ovation for any player in recent memory. Imagine an entire stadium starting the I Believe chant!

Oakland will look to Jesse Hahn (3-4, 3.56 ERA, 1.32 WHIP) to help avoid the sweep against the Astros, who have now won 9 consecutive games against the A's at the Coliseum. For those interested in a good streak, the current domination of the A's at home is the longest since the 1979 season when the Baltimore Orioles finally lost to the A's at the Coliseum for the first time since the 1976 season, spanning 13 consecutive losses.

Hahn is 1-3 with a 6.05 ERA in 4 career starts against the Astros. One of Hahn's 4 losses this season came at Houston. He threw 6 innings (98 pitches), allowing 4 runs (3 earned) on 8 hits while striking out 6 in a 7-2 loss.

During the month of June, Hahn is 2-0 with a 2.81 ERA mostly due to really good luck. In those 3 starts, his WHIP is 1.43 while opponents have hit .279 and have a .347 BABIP. Houston's entire lineup can seemingly give quality at-bats and are far more likely to make Hahn pay for allowing so many base-runners aboard.

Without Vogt, Bruce Maxwell will get the call as Hahn's battery mate for just the third time in Hahn's career.

He's going to face off against the 23-year old right hander from the D.R., David Paulino (1-0, 5.03 ERA, 1.37 WHIP), who earned his first career victory in his last start against the Red Sox. In it, Paulino allowed 3 hits in 6 innings while striking out 4 and walking just one en route to a 7-1 Astros victory.

For those that haven't seen much of Paulino, he's a big guy at 6'7'' who throws a four-seamer in the mid-90s with good rising action that produces quite a few fly-balls and may play well in the spacious Coliseum if the wind isn't blowing out; he combines the fastball with an impressive slider and curve, that both have a lot of bite, as well as a change-up to keep hitters honest. Paulino isn't prone to walks thus far, as he's only walked 5 in roughly 20 innings this season while striking out 20 batters. Between AA, AAA, and the Astros last season, he struck out 106 while walking just 19 in 90 innings.

Today's Lineups

George Springer - CF Matt Joyce - LF
Josh Reddick - RF Matt Olson - RF
Carlos Correa - SS Ryon Healy - 3B
Carlos Beltran - DH Khris Davis - DH
Evan Gattis - C Yonder Alonso - 1B
Marwin Gonzalez - 2B Chad Pinder - 2B
Yulieski Gurriel - 1B Jaycob Brugman - CF
Alex Bregman - 3B Bruce Maxwell - C
Norichika Aoki - LF Adam Rosales - SS
David Paulino - RHP Jesse Hahn - RHP