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Game #82 Thread: A’s at Tigers

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A’s may have lost their most recent streAk but today, Manaea and company look for the SWEEP!

Oakland Athletics v Chicago White Sox - Game One
Sean Manaea
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The A’s are currently five games over the .500 mark at the season’s half way point. That was an outcome not predicted by the majority of baseball insiders, it wasn’t expected by the rest of the American League West or the fans. I can’t speak for the players, but they ended the first half of the 2018 season beyond most everyone’s expectations.

With the offense rocking — but just barely missing (three separate times) continuing their Major League Baseball record 27 straight road games with a home run (usually, at least two if not five) — the bullpen doing most of the work from the pitching standpoint and a much improved team defense the A’s are not quite what many expected.

Of course, those of us here that watch the A’s day in and day out, despite their record — good or bad — can attest that it is and has almost always been the way of the A’s to do unexpected things and surprise the majority of the baseball world.

*Quick side note to prove this point: I clicked on a random “suggested” site this morning, which is never a good idea. The article stated that they A’s had not won a playoff series since the 90’s and, how with the exception of 2002, they had been irrelevant until this 27-game MLB road home run record — seriously! — that’s how little people know about the A’s. Any one of us could rattle off a number of crazy and amazing feats the A’s have accomplished in the past two decades, but suffice it to say this (from me to that random author), “Um, actually bro, they did win a playoff series. Just because you don’t remember their 2006 victory over the Minnesota Twins in the ALDS — doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. I mean seriously, Mark Kotsay hit an inside-the-parker in that series! Really? Nothing?!”

That A’s have kept their heads above .500 halfway through the season with just about every projected, possible and/or potential starter going down with an injury is impressive. That they are just seven games out of a Wild Card spot is even more impressive. Personally, I’d consider those facts, along with their incredibly hot offense (on the road), being on the relevant side of things. However, I guess the definition of “relevant” can, in some cases, be different. Regardless, the A’s did make it to the ALCS in 2006 (we all know who ended series).

So it’s fitting that, with Sean Manaea on the mound facing the Detroit Tigers’ Michael Fulmer, the A’s are going for the full four-game sweep of the Tigers this morning (10:00 AM PT on MLBN) at Comerica Park.

Here are today’s lineups:

Athletics:

  1. Dustin Fowler - CF
  2. Mark Canha - LF
  3. Jed Lowrie - 3B
  4. Khris Davis - DH
  5. Matt Olson - 3B
  6. Stephen Piscotty - RF
  7. Jonathan Lucroy - C
  8. Marcus Semien - SS
  9. Chad Pinder - 2B

Tigers:

  1. Jeiner Candelario - 3B
  2. Jose Iglesias - SS
  3. Nicholas Castellanos - RF
  4. John Hicks - 1B
  5. Victor Martinez - DH
  6. Niko Goodrum - 2B
  7. James McCann - C
  8. JaCoby Jones - CF
  9. Victor Reyes - LF

Bring out the brooms! Let’s Go Oakland!