The Oakland Athletics blasted the Chicago White Sox yesterday afternoon and will look for more on Saturday. They are in the midst of a tight wildcard race and need to take advantage of weak opponents down the stretch. The Athletics certainly did that on Friday with a perfect performance from the pitching staff and bats.
Mike Fiers, who was a terrific acquisition last season at the trade deadline, was dominant with just 3 hits allowed in 7 innings. The ROI has been up into the roof with him. Fiers wasn’t the flashiest pitcher to trade for, but he’s producing well more than he gets credit form. The Athletics have a knack for finding diamonds in the rough and getting the most out of them.
Offensively, the Athletics got RBI’s from five different players, with Chad Pinder and Dustin Garneau each converting for 2 runners batted in. The Athletics have been in a tight battle with the Rays for the final wildcard in the American League. The rest of the field has thinned out except the Athletics and Rays.
The only other team that might have a shot are the Boston Red Sox. If they catch fire and end up stealing a wildcard, that’s not going to surprise too many people. However, with their pitching out of wack it’s not going to be easy. They have to figure it out or they aren’t going anywhere.
The Athletics and Rays are similar well-rounded teams. I don’t think either team is pulling away. Newcomer, Tanner Roark, will get the call tonight in Chicago. Again, another under the radar acquisition by the Athletics.
Instead of seeking an All-Star, they traded for Homer Bailey and Tanner Roark for the most Oakland Athletics thing ever. Reynaldo Lopez, a guy who the White Sox were banking on developing tenfold in 2019, hasn’t come around. He will get the nod against Roark here. Head below for our free Athletics vs. White Sox pick.
Oakland Athletics vs. Chicago White Sox Pick:
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There were rumors that the Athletics were looking at Marcus Stroman and Madison Bumgarner, but that would have been so against the grain for them that it sounded outlandish to begin with. Throw it into the writers looking for clicks bin. The A’s didn’t have to give up much to pick up Roark, though he might be an effective hurler in Oakland. He was fantastic in his debut for the Athletics, allowing 4 hits and 1-run against the Cardinals in 5 innings of work.
Roark can be inconsistent, however. National fans are familiar with his inconsistencies, as his six years there was a roller coaster. It continued in Cincinnati this season as well. He came to Oakland with an ERA of 4.24 in 21 starts with the Reds. He brought his ERA down to 4.14 thanks to that showing against the Cards in his Oakland debut. Before the trade, he got hammered for 6 hits and 5 runs in 3.1 innings. It can be a mixed bag with him.
Roark doesn’t have much experience against the White Sox. Three hitters have combined for a .333 average and .438 OBP against Roark. For the White Sox, they start Reynaldo Lopez who has been a major disappointment this year. He enters with an ERA of 5.41 and 1.48 WHIP on the season. Lopez’s effort at home hasn’t been too impressive either, with a 5.50 ERA and 1.46 WHIP in 70.1 innings.
The Athletics have scored at least 4 runs in six of their previous seven outings. Despite a 7-0 game yesterday, the OVER has gone 7-3 in the Athletics and White Sox last ten meetings. That was the first game that the White Sox scored less than 5 runs since August 3rd on the road against the Phillies. We likely see at least 10 runs to see this final score go OVER the total.