Trevor Cahill takes the mound today as the Oakland A’s look to gain a small bit of ground on the division-leading Rangers. A win cuts the Rangers lead to 7.5 games, while a loss moves the A’s back to 9.5 out. It’s “only” a 2-game swing, but given the way the Rangers have been performing, this kind of psychological momentum might be enough to just about call the AL West race. A win by the A’s would at least keep some shred of doubt in the back of the Rangers’ collective minds. So, for the purposes of the 2010 AL West race, consider this a must-win for the A’s.
If the A’s are going to win today, Cahill would certainly seem to be the guy to send to the hill. Cahill is currently on an 18 inning scoreless streak, which includes 8 shutout innings of the Rangers on July 28 in Texas. The A’s have alternated wins and losses over their last 8 games, and will be looking to win two in a row for the first time since July 25.
The A’s face Colby Lewis who has pitched well against the A’s, holding the A’s to a .213 batting average, and sporting a 3.15 era. His problem has been a lack of run support, which leaves him 0-2 against the A’s. The normally potent Rangers offense has been held to an average of just 3 runs in the three games Lewis has pitched against the A’s.