The Oakland Athletics and Houston Astros step up on the field for a potential preview of a postseason series in the American League. Oakland would love for that to happen, because their postseason prospects are currently up in the air. A clash with the Astros in the postseason would mean they did pretty good from now until October.
The Athletics need more wins down the stretch if they want to be playing postseason baseball. That’s a foregone conclusion for the Astros. We just have to learn what seed the Astros are going to get. Oakland hold an advantage over the Indians going into Tuesday. It’s between Oakland and Cleveland. The Red Sox are far too back and they just threw in the towel with the firing of GM Dave Dombrowski.
There is also the chase for homefield advantage in the Wild Card Game. The Rays are only a game up on the A’s for homefield. So, there is a lot going on here that Oakland are playing for. The only guarantee is that they will not be catching the Astros in the AL West. The ‘Stros hold a sizable lead on the Athletics for 1st in the division. That’s not going to be in question. All left to do for Houston is to try and clinch the top seed in baseball.
The Astros are in a good position and will be going into the postseason as one of the most well-rounded teams. I’d have to say that they ARE the most well-rounded team. You can make the argument that it’s the Dodgers, but I will take the clutchness of Justin Verlander over Clayton Kershaw any day in October.
Until the Dodgers can show they can play well under pressure, there are more attractive teams out there. Wade Miley got rocked in his most recent outing. He’ll get a chance to bounce back against the A’s at Minute Maid Park tonight. The A’s will counter with former National, Tanner Roark. Head below for our free Athletics vs. Astros pick.
Oakland Athletics vs. Houston Astros Pick:
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It wasn’t a pretty scene for Wade Miley in his most recent showing. Overall, 2019 has been a great year for Miley. He signed with a contender and is having one of the best seasons of his career. Miley will also have an opportunity to compete for a World Series in October. Having said that, Miley didn’t look like he was ready for October against the lowly Mariners. He was rocked for 5 hits and 5 earned runs without recording 1 out.
Despite that effort, the Astros still stormed all the way back for a 11-9 win. A terrible team like the Mariners make it easy to complete comebacks like that. However, against the big boys, the Astros are not going to have the same outcome. Note that it was the first game since June 22nd that Miley allowed more than 3 runs in a game. He went 12 straight appearances with less than 4 runs allowed.
Miley has been solid against the Athletics in his career, as they’re hitting .203 in 128 at-bats. Oakland have recorded just 2 home runs and 8 runs in that time. I’m under the impression that Miley is due for a response against the A’s tonight. Conversely, the Astros’ bats have been red-hot against Roark in his career. They are hitting .357 with a .403 OBP in 56 at-bats. Roark has been pitching well since getting traded to Oakland, though, as he enters Tuesday with a 2.70 ERA and 1.12 WHIP. As an Athletic, Roark has posted a 2.70 ERA and 1.12 WHIP.
Roark has not been great on the road this season. He has a 4.10 ERA in 63.2 innings overall, along with a 4.26 ERA on the road as an Athletic. Roark has avoided a bad start with the A’s thus far, but this looks like a spot where he is vulnerable to getting hit hard. The Astros have shown that ability against Roark in the past. Look for Miley to respond, while Roark regresses on Tuesday night. I’m on the Astros here.