Tampa Bay continues to battle for a spot in the postseason with 4-2 record in its last six games on the road that has it two games out of a wildcard spot. The Rays are 53-49 overall and just over .500 on the road at 25-24. The total has stayed ‘under’ in nine of their last 10 games.
Runs have been hard to come by over the past few weeks for Tampa Bay so it is easy to see why it is ranked 11th in the AL in scoring. Fortunately, the Rays still have one of the best pitching staffs in the league and are ranked second only to Oakland with a team ERA of 3.57. They will send David Price to the mound to get this series started. The left-hander is 14-4 in 20 previous starts with a 2.57 ERA. He held Baltimore to one earned run on seven hits his last time out to earn his sixth win in his last seven starts. Price is 2-1 against the A’s with a 3.62 ERA.
Oakland has been one of the hottest teams in the Majors in the month of July and despite going 2-2 in its last four games, it is has gone 12-3 since the All-Star break. The Athletics are now just 4.5 games in back of Texas in the AL West and currently holding one of the wildcard spots for the postseason. They are 29-21 at home this season and the total has gone ‘over’ in four of their last seven games.
The Athletics’ 3.44 team ERA in tops in the AL, but offense remains a concern for this team as well. Through 101 games, they are ranked dead-last in the AL in scoring with an average of just 4.06 runs per game. Oakland will go with AJ Griffin as its starter for tonight’s game. The rookie has won his last three starts while giving-up a total of five earned runs. Overall, the right-hander has an ERA of 2.25 in six total starts with a 0.97 WHIP.
This game should remain a tight, low-scoring affair right into the late innings with two quality starters on the mound. The Rays have struggled in the past winning in Oakland with a 16-41 record in their last 57 games here and drop the first game of this series as well. Oakland 3 Tampa Bay 2