The Oakland Athletics have been on the road in Minnesota for the past few days, and on the road since April 25th. Beginning in Anaheim, this will be the A’s ninth game on the road in a row. I’d rather get these road trips out of the way at the start of the year, so that’s one way to look at it for Oakland.
The problem for the Athletics is that they haven’t actually shown up to play on the road. They’ve won just one single game during their trip, which included another loss last night against the Twins. Minnesota will be looking to take their third in a row off the Athletics tonight.
You don’t hear very often that the Twins are looking to take three games from another team. The Twins, though, are holding in there thus far, in a wide-open AL Central. In just a week or two a lot can change, so the Twins have a lot of work to do if they want to be the 2017 version of the Cleveland Indians.
The Indians, Tigers, White Sox, and Twins have been unable to be very unique. They all have 14 or 13 wins, while the Royals are trailing everyone with a record of 8-17. It’s been a fall from grace for them.
The Athletics know what it feels like to be a competitive team, and then go to scraping the bottom of the barrel. The team who are known as the inventors of “moneyball”, the A’s aren’t getting it to work for them in 2017. Nor did they last season, as they fell to last in the division, a record of 69-93 in the AL West.
With a bare rotation, the Athletics don’t expect to make many moves this year. In any event, they’ll look to get off their losing streak in Minnesota this afternoon. Note that this is an early start time. Get the free Athletics vs. Twins pick below here at The Sports Geek.
Oakland Athletics vs. Minnesota Twins Pick
Jharel Cotton (2-3, 5.00 ERA) vs. Kyle Gibson (0-3, 8.06 ERA)
It’d be something if the Twins win the AL Central this season, a year after the Indians won the division. The Tribe were not the favorites to win the division, nor are the Twins’ favorites to win it. To be honest, it’s hard to pinpoint one team that we can nail down as the favorite. That really goes for the rest of the majors, it’s a wide-open competition across the landscape. The erratic Kyle Gibson will give it a try tonight in Minnesota. Gibson enters with a putrid ERA, which puts him in danger of getting sent down to the minors.
If Gibson doesn’t get going soon, that’s going to be his ultimatum. He owns an ERA of 8.06 in 22.1 innings pitched, five starts. He’s allowed a whopping 20 runs over the course of that stretch, getting no further than 5.1 innings on the mound.
Expectedly so, his WHIP is high as well, posting a 1.84 WHIP, including a 2.18 in his last three starts. The A’s will counter with Jharel Cotton, who was hoping for some carryover from his end of the year starts in 2016. Cotton holds a 5.00 ERA, as well as a 5.74 ERA in his last three showings. There are no indications that there shouldn’t be enough runs to get this one OVER the total. Our Thursday MLB pick will hopefully feature a lot of runs for us to cover the OVER at 9.
PICK: OVER 9 (-110)