The Oakland Athletics open up a three-game home stand with the Minnesota Twins as the 2011 MLB trade deadline approaches on Sunday. Both teams find themselves in predicaments as the trade deadline approaches. The A's are 12 1/2 games back of first and 11 games under .500. For all intents and purposes they're out of the AL West division race. However, they are not getting much in the way of solid offers and a guy like Josh Willingham could net them draft pick compensation in the offseason. Thus, even though the A's would typically be sellers, they are likely going to hold on to some of their veterans.
The Twins are six games back of first and nine games under .500. They've struggled with numerous injuries and are 8-8 since the All Star break. The AL Central race remains fairly wide open as the Tigers have not been able to run away with the division. The Twins fall into a sort of pergatory category where they're not really buyers or sellers.
And so the two teams square off with no real idea what their rosters will look like three days from now. The A's will send out Gio Gonzalez, Guillermo Moscoso and Brandon McCarthy to face Francisco Liriano, Nick Blackburn and Carl Pavano. The A's will spend much of the second half of the season evaluating their talent as they look to 2012. McCarthy is on a one-year deal looking to prove he's back from his injured past. He missed a stretch earlier this year but if he can finish the season healthy he's likely out the door. Moscosco entered the season at Triple-A and has proven himself to be valuable part of the rotation following injuries to McCarthy, Dallas Braden, and Tyson Ross.
The A's offense has guys like Josh Willingham, David DeJesus and Conor Jackson on the market just as they're starting to find their way. The A's offense was wildly inconsistent the first half of the season but has found its way in the second half, at least for now. If they can keep it up, maybe this team can quietly get back into the playoff race. It's not likely, but crazier things have happened.
3 game series vs Twins @ Overstock.com Coliseum
|Sat 07/30 - Guillermo Moscoso vs. Nick Blackburn||6:05 PM PDT|
|Sun 07/31 - Brandon McCarthy vs. Carl Pavano||1:05 PM PDT|