The Oakland A's look to keep their dwindling playoff hopes alive with a tough three game home series against the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox have struggled with a ton of injuries (something with which A's fans have always been familiar) and will send out three pitchers who have been all over the place this season to face the A's tough young pitching staff.
The series opens tonight with a battle of potential long term aces for both teams. The A's send out Trevor Cahill who started the season in AAA but has become the A's best pitcher this season. He'll face Clay Buchholz, who has joined Jon Lester to form quite the dynamic duo in the Red Sox pitching staff. Buchholz is currently 15-6 with a 2.25 era. He put together an impressive August in which he was 4-0 over 6 starts with a 1.03 era.
Brett Anderson matches up with John Lackey on Saturday. Anderson hasn't received a ton of run support, which has hurt his win totals. Nonetheless, Anderson has been quite solid game in and game out and will look to keep the A's in the game yet again. John Lackey has been a bit inconsistent for the Red Sox and is in fact looking at one of the worst seasons of his career. Aside from the ERA and WHIP numbers Lackey has seen all of his peripheral stats go down including K/9, K/BB and batting average and OPS again.
The series wraps up with Dallas Braden facing Josh Beckett. Braden finds himself having the best season of his short career as he has provided a bit of a quasi-veteran presence for the pitching staff since Ben Sheets went down. Aside from his perfect game in May, Braden has improved just about all his peripheral pitching categories. He faces Josh Beckett who has had a fairly miserable season that included a long stretch on the DL in June and much of July. He's had three straight strong starts and could be finding the light at the end of the tunnel.
The Rangers will be hosting the Yankees this weekend, which makes this series all the more important for the A's. There is still some time left in the season, but the A's would love to pick up a game or two before they head off to Kansas City and Minnesota next week.
3 game series vs Red Sox @ Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum
|Sat 09/11 - John Lackey vs Brett Anderson||6:05 PM PDT|
|Sun 09/12 - Josh Beckett vs Dallas Braden||1:05 PM PDT|