The Oakland Athletics and Detroit Tigers meet at Comerica Park in downtown Detroit for the third time this season. The Athletics got things started in a big way with a massive 17-3 win on Thursday. The day was capped off by 5 home runs, which included a Profar grand slam to lead the Athletics. Oakland were losers in 11 of their previous 12 road games, so they were able to get out some frustration in that one.
The A’s have been one of the worst road teams in the major leagues this season, but it certainly didn’t look like the case against the Tigers. Trailing by nearly ten games in the AL West the A’s have a small bit of work to do to get into contention. They started to come on late last season, but it was far too late to mount a comeback.
Maybe they should consider getting on the winning trail before August. It was a closer game last night, but the same result in the W-L column. Oakland took a 3-0 lead in the 5th inning, as Frankie Montas had a no-hitter going before Miguel Cabrera connected for a double in the bottom of the 5th. It didn’t take long for the Athletics to get it right back and more, as they rang the scoreboard to 6-1 pretty quickly.
Josh Harrison was able to bring Cabrera in two hitters later. It’s a work-in-progress in Detroit this season, but they are in a rebuilding phase anyway. With Casey Mize’s major league arrival approaching in two or so years, the Tigers should focus on having a team built to win then. This is more of a feeling out process to see who wants to be included in those plans.
The A’s are hoping that Daniel Mengden can round into shape after trying to become a fulltime contributor after a serious injury in 2017. Mengden exited 2017 after just seven starts when things were going pretty well for him. At the time, he had an ERA of 3.14. Mengden made 17 starts last season and was decent, but didn’t reach those levels of success. Head below for our free Athletics vs. Tigers pick.
Oakland Athletics vs. Detroit Tigers Pick:
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There haven’t been too many bright spots for the Tigers this season, it’s often difficult to locate them in a rebuilding season, but Matt Boyd is starting to hit his stride finally. Boyd was acquired in the David Price trade and he’s finally developed into one of the best options in the Tigers’ rotation. After a few pedestrian seasons as a Tiger, Boyd has been having his best season thus far. He hasn’t allowed more than 3 runs in any game this year. Boyd posted an ERA of 4.39 last season, which was a career-high for him. Early indications suggest that he’s ready to surpass that in 2019.
Boyd goes into Saturday with a 3.15 ERA and 0.99 WHIP. He hasn’t allowed more than 3 runs and has given up 2 or less runs in five of eight outings this season. The lefty has faced some pretty good offenses as well, including the Astros, Yankees, and Red Sox. Boyd has been slightly better at home with an ERA of 3.00 and 0.97 WHIP in 30 innings on the mound. Mengden will make his second start of 2019 in Detroit on Saturday.
His first try this season wasn’t too hot, as he allowed 4 earned runs and 5 runs in total against the Indians in 5.1 innings. He was knocked with an ERA of 6.75, .375 OBA, and 1.69 WHIP when his day was all said and done. Mengden’s control was an issue as well, yielding 4 walks in his first outing of 2019.
He reached 100 pitches in that game and it was a surprise given it was his first start. His workload was expected to be a little less than that. He hadn’t thrown at least 100 pitches since May 31st of last season. After getting steamrolled the last two days, expect Boyd to get the Tigers back on track, at least for one game. The Athletics likely regress after outscoring the Tigers 24-5 on Thursday and Friday. They are still only a 7-15 team on the road this season. Consider selecting the Tigers in this spot on Saturday at Comerica.