The Oakland Athletics kick off their first road trip of the season with three games at the Toronto Blue Jays. They'll follow that up with three games at the Minnesota Twins and three games at the Chicago White Sox. The A's finish at .500 last season was due in part to an ugly 34-47 road record. If the Athletics are going to challenge for the 2011 AL West title, they'll need to prove stronger on the road.
The A's made a switch in their rotation heading into tonight's first game, flipping Brandon McCarthy and Dallas Braden. McCarthy will start tonight against Jo-Jo Reyes and Braden will start tomorrow night against Jesse Litsch. Trevor Cahill will wrap up the series on Thursday against Ricky Romero. No reason has been given for the change in the rotation.
The Blue Jays got off to a solid start taking two of three in their opening series with the Minnesota Twins. They've received a strong mix of pitching and hitting and will be looking to build on last year's 85-77 record. It's still early but Jose Bautista is off to a strong start as he looks to prove 2010 was not a fluke. He was 5 for 11 with two home runs in the opening series and A's pitchers will need to tread lightly around him. I'm curious to see how much A's pitchers challenge him early in the series.
The A's have opened as the early slim favorite in today's matchup. If I had to guess, I'd say the A's will be favored in tomorrow's Braden-Litsch matchup, but then we might see Romero favored against Cahill on Thursday, albeit a slim favorite. I don't think either team will be a significant favorite in any of this week's matchups.
3 game series vs Blue Jays @ Rogers Centre
|Wed 04/06 - Dallas Braden vs. Jesse Litsch||4:07 PM PDT|
|Thu 04/07 - Trevor Cahill vs. Ricky Romero||9:37 AM PDT|