#926 Oakland A'svs.#925 Baltimore Orioles
Saturday, August 8 2017, at 9:05pm EDT
Written by Chris Kubala
Baltimore Orioles (57-58 SU, 58-57 RL, 57-54-3 O/U) vs. Oakland A’s (50-65 SU, 58-57 RL, 62-48-4 O/U)
MLB: Saturday, August 12, 2017, O.co Coliseum, Oakland, California, 9:05 pm ET
Lines: Baltimore -109, Oakland -101; Over/Under: 9.5
It’s the continuation of a cross-country series up in Northern California. The Baltimore Orioles continue a road trip as they play the third of four games against the Oakland A’s Saturday night. Baltimore won the opening game of the series as they took a 7-2 win Thursday night. The pitching matchup for Friday’s second game of the series saw Ubaldo Jimenez pitch for the Orioles against Oakland’s Paul Blackburn. First pitch in the contest was set for 10:05 pm ET.
Baltimore bounced back from losing two of three in Anaheim by rolling to the win in the opener here. The Orioles climbed to within 1.5 games of the Mariners and Rays for the second wild card spot in what is a crowded field. Trey Mancini (two runs, two RBI) had three hits for Baltimore while Tim Beckham (two runs) and Adam Jones (run, three RBI) each added a pair. Jones (his 21st), Mancini (his 19th and 20th) and Mark Trumbo (his 18th) all homered in the game. Wade Miley (6-9) got the win with seven sharp innings: he allowed one run (none earned) on three hits with three walks and seven strikeouts. Zach Britton got the final out with the bases loaded to pick up his 10th save.
Dylan Bundy takes the mound for his 23rd start of the season here. He comes in 11-8 with a 4.15 ERA, a 1.191 WHIP, 40 walks and 107 strikeouts over 134.1 innings of work. Bundy picked up the win in his last start, which came on the road against the Angels Monday. He allowed two runs on five hits with no walks and 10 strikeouts over seven innings in an eventual 6-2 Orioles triumph. Bundy is 2-0 with a 3.98 ERA, a 0.98 WHIP, four walks and 19 strikeouts over 20.1 innings in his last three starts. He did not factor into the decision in his lone relief appearance against the A’s: he threw two innings, allowing an unearned run on two hits with a walk and two strikeouts. In his 61st major league appearance and 37th start, Bundy pitches at the O.co Coliseum for the first time in his career.
Oakland is reduced to spoiler status the rest of the season but they struggled in that role again Thursday night, losing their third straight overall. The A’s had seven hits in the loss with only Jed Lowrie (two RBI) having two hits. Oakland fanned 10 times in the game and went 1 for 12 with runners in scoring position while leaving 10 guys on base. In the field, a Marcus Semien error led to a pair of unearned runs and the damage was done. Chris Smith (0-2) took the loss as he gave up five runs on seven hits with a walk and three strikeouts over six innings.
Sean Manaea takes the mound for the A’s as he makes his 22nd start of the year. He is 8-6 with a 4.15 ERA, a 1.316 WHIP, 41 walks and 112 strikeouts over 119.1 innings of work this season. Manaea recorded a no-decision in his last start, which was on the road against the Angels Sunday. He allowed six runs (five earned) on six hits with two walks and one strikeout over 3.1 innings in an improbable, 11-10, Oakland triumph. Manaea is 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA, a 1.88 WHIP, three walks and nine strikeouts over 13.1 innings in his last three starts. In his 47th major league appearance and 46th start, he faces the Orioles for the first time in his career. Manaea is 9-5 with a 3.33 ERA and a 1.201 WHIP over 24 appearances, 23 starts, totaling 140.2 innings at the O.co Coliseum in his career.
This one is a matter of who still has a shot to make something of their season. Despite some abysmal play in long stretches of the season, the Orioles are still in the heat of the wild card race. Bundy seems to have righted himself in his last three starts while Manaea has been roughed up. That, coupled with Oakland’s dealing of some of their veterans at and after the trade deadline, gives the Orioles the advantage in this contest. Look for Baltimore to tighten things up with a win here.
Baltimore is pushing their way back into the AL wild card picture to the point where they’re kicking tires on pitching again. The Orioles are one of six teams within 1.5 games of the second wild card spot in the American League with still seven weeks or so to go in the regular season. Oakland is left playing spoiler and trying to make things miserable for their opponents. Dealing Sonny Gray, Yonder Alonso, Ryan Madson and Sean Doolittle has taken a toll on the talent pool of the organization, at least at the major league level.
The under is 4-0 in the Orioles last 4 overall, 4-0 in their last 4 vs. a team with a losing record, 4-0 in their last 4 road games, 10-1 in their last 11 road games vs. a team with a losing record and 13-3 in their last 16 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Oakland has seen the under go 8-2 in their last 10 games against AL East opponents and 5-2-1 in Manaea’s last 8 home starts vs. a team with a losing record. The teams have stayed under the total in four of their last five meetings in Oakland and four of the last five overall. With the quality starting pitching matchup here, this one likely comes just under the total.
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Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. He keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college, the NHL, the NBA and college basketball and MLB.