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Game Thread #25: Athletics Vs. Rangers

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MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Oakland Athletics
Apr 21, 2019; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Athletics center fielder Ramon Laureano (22) scores on a single by Marcus Semien as Toronto Blue Jays catcher Danny Jansen (9) awaits the late relay during the eighth inning of a Major League Baseball game at Oakland Coliseum. 
D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports

Our now 11-13 Oakland A’s are on the road to redemption after getting swept by the Blue Jays over the weekend. While a potential injury to Brett Anderson is of concern, right hander Chris Bassitt is back and making his season debut today after receiving a shin contusion in March. Bassitt was recalled from Las Vegas AAA when Marco Estrada was placed on the injured list. Bassitt went 2-3 with a 3.02 ERA striking out 41 in 47 inning in Oakland last year, better than his minor league stats for 2018.

Bassitt will toe the rubber against veteran Mike Minor whose most recent outing was a shutout of the Angels. He sports a 2-1 record with an impressive 2.60 ERA, though in the last three starts his ERA is an amazing .78. Minor may not be with the Rangers long as the Mets and Phillies allegedly are interested in some type of trade.

Marcus Semien is continuing to be red-hot this season, currently batting .322 with three home runs, 11 RBI’s and one stolen base. With an on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS) of .892. With the newly signed (through 2021) Khris Davis’ 10 home runs to-date and Ramon Laureano’s arm, there is much to enjoy despite the recent losses.

I’m sure everyone at AN has seen this but just in case you missed it, or can’t get enough of it, here is the double play that led to Laureano’s MLB play of the week honor:

But if you really need a pick me up and missed this, check out Dallas Braden and his reaction. It will sweep those “sweep” blues away:

A special feature tonight at the Coliseum, to honor Earth Day, is the singing of the National Anthem “unplugged” by the entire stadium. Of course, when I was a kid, everyone ALWAYS sang the National Anthem. Earth Day gives us a chance to go retro and connect with our national pride and our old pal Zito. [If you haven’t read this morning’s interview Josh Iversen did with Z, check it out here: https://www.athleticsnation.com/2019/4/22/18511161/barry-zito-interview-oakland-as-curveball-energy

Tonight’s starting lineup is as follows:

And the Rangers: