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Game Thread #83: A’s vs. Indians

MLB: Kansas City Royals at Oakland Athletics Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Good evening and a happy Friday to you! I find myself in the unique position of opening up another Friday night game thread where the A’s are trying to notch their fifth win in a row. This happened last week on the first game of the doubleheader, and surprise, here we are again today!

The A’s, fresh off a delightful four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers and if they aren’t the hottest team in the league (annoyingly, the one team standing in their playoff way right now is just as hot), they’re certainly one of the hottest, will take their show home against the Central Division-leading Cleveland Indians. After the 8-2 road trip, the A’s, with their elite offense and patchwork starting rotation, will try to keep the ball rolling at home; now in the second half of the season six games above .500. Of all the seasons not to be in the Central, am I right? But we are where we are, and despite a disposable starting pitching staff, the A’s are wildly interesting this season.

Tonight’s turn on the mound belongs to Paul Blackburn, who was shelled in the A’s loss on Sunday, one of only two losses in their last 10 games. He’s been...not great...this season, but he’s a live body that can throw the ball across the plate, so he’s hired for the job tonight. And I’m only kidding a little bit.

Meanwhile, the A’s offense will be facing Trevor Bauer, who is good and strikes out batters. Let’s hope the A’s can smush some home runs in between their Ks. Most importantly, will Jed Lowrie have another game-winning hit?

Here are your lineups:

Today's Lineups

Francisco Lindor - SS Dustin Fowler - CF
Michael Brantley - LF Matt Joyce - LF
Jose Ramirez - 3B Jed Lowrie - 3B
Edwin Encarnacion - DH Khris Davis - DH
Yonder Alonso - 1B Matt Olson - 1B
Lonnie Chisenhall - RF Stephen Piscotty - RF
Jason Kipnis - 2B Marcus Semien - SS
Roberto Perez - C Jonathan Lucroy - C
Tyler Naquin - CF Franklin Barreto - 2B
Trevor Bauer - RHP Paul Blackburn - RHP