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Cleveland Indians at Oakland A's series preview

The Indians return to their favorite place, the road, with their final trip out west. First up is the A’s in Oakland Coliseum.

Josh Reddick and Stephen Vogt lead the Athletics charge
Josh Reddick and Stephen Vogt lead the Athletics charge
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The offense finally showed up yesterday, though a bit too late to save the last homestand. The Tribe now heads west for some late night starts (prime time for us West Coasters!). First stop will be in Oakland to take on the failed Billy Beane experiment (at least in 2015) Athletics.

  • Thursday 10:05 PM: Carlos Carrasco (R) vs. Chris Bassitt (R)
  • Friday 9:35 PM: Danny Salazar (R) vs. Kendall Graveman (R)
  • Saturday 9:05 PM: Cody Anderson (R) vs. TBD (R/L)
  • Sunday 4:05 PM: Trevor Bauer (R)vs. Sonny Gray (R)

The Upcoming Schedule: The west coast trip finishes with a trip to Disneyland, er Anaheim, to take on Mike Trout and the Angels. After a travel day on Thursday, they return home to take on the surprising Twins and the hated Yankees.

Division Watch: Royals at Blue Jays, Mariners at Twins, Tigers at Orioles, Yankees at White Sox.

Team in a Box

Oakland A's

Offense

AL Rank

Pitching

AL Rank

2015 Record

45-57

Runs/Game

4.2

9th

Runs/Game

3.8

6th

AL West

5th

OBP

314

8th

H/9

8.2

4th

Last 10

4-6

SLG

389

11th

BB/9

2.8

8th

Last 30

14-16

Steals

59

5th

SO/9

7.6

7th

The series in Cleveland from July 10 to July 12 started off very promising. The Tribe won the opener 5-1, lost a tight one 5-4 in game two and got shutout 2-0 by Sonny Gray in the finale. Since then, the A's split four games in Minnesota, lost two of three to the Blue Jays, were swept in San Francisco and split a pair against the Dodgers.

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Projected Roster

Pos

Player

Bats

PA

BA

OPS

wRC+

C

Stephen Vogt

L

365

271

812

126

1B

Ike Davis

L

195

249

705

100

2B

Eric Sogard

L

270

244

561

59

3B

Brett Lawrie

R

376

280

726

104

SS

Marcus Semien

R

396

249

669

87

LF

Jake Smolinski

R

29

320

1019

178

CF

Billy Burns

S

332

304

733

108

RF

Josh Reddick

L

370

292

816

130

DH

Billy Butler

R

388

246

690

93

OF

Mark Canha

R

251

232

681

92

OF

Sam Fuld

L

219

210

607

71

C

Josh Phegley

R

151

271

811

126

IF

Max Muncy

L

88

203

640

79

The only hitter that has departed since we saw the A's last was Ben Zobrist, who was traded to the Royals. Overall, this lineup has regressed massively since June. In June they put up a respectable 263/330/409 line, but so far in July it has been 232/273/349, over an 100 OPS drop. In the past two weeks, Zobrist's replacement Smolinski has been tearing it up. He has 1042 OPS and two homes covering 25 PA. Reddick and Phegley are the only two others posting higher than 800 OPS in that time. Semien, Lawrie, Vogt and Canha all have had a sub 450 OPS.

In the series at Progressive, it was Vogt and Zobrist that led the way with 1500 and 1045 OPS respectively and Vogt was the only one to hit a home run. As a team, they scored just eight runs in those three games with Canha, Davis, Semien, Sogard, Burns and Lawrie all below 500 OPS.

Projected Staff

Player

Throws

ERA

FIP

IP

WHIP

K/9

Sonny Gray

R

2.16

2.87

145.2

0.98

7.7

Jesse Chavez

R

3.53

3.23

114.2

1.26

7.8

Kendall Graveman

R

4.13

4.75

89.1

1.47

5.7

Chris Bassitt

R

2.94

4.02

33.2

1.13

5.6

Drew Pomeranz

L

4.08

3.76

64.0

1.28

7.6

Evan Scribner

R

3.91

4.23

48.1

1.06

9.5

Fernando Rodriguez

R

4.11

1.70

30.2

1.08

11.4

Fernando Abad

L

3.62

4.90

27.1

1.06

8.6

Dan Otero

R

5.85

4.25

32.1

1.49

6.7

Eric O'Flaherty

L

5.91

4.11

21.1

4.97

6.3

Edward Mujica#

R

4.13

5.05

28.1

1.17

6.4

R.J. Alvarez

R

13.00

7.30

9.0

2.11

16.0

#includes stats with Red Sox

There have been two major changes to the staff. Scott Kazmir was dealt to Houston and closer Tyler Clippard was sent to Washington. With Clippard dealt, it is not clear who will be the closer yet. Another move will need to be made for the Saturday game. It could be Barry Zito getting the call.

Since Bassitt landed in the rotation on June 30, he has made four starts. He may be 0-3 in those starts but has pitched very well. He has a 2.74 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, and 5.1 K/9 covering 23 innings. One of those four starts was in Cleveland on July 11 was his only no decision, pitching 6.1 innings, 7 hits, 2 runs, 1 walk and 3strikeouts. Graveman has made four starts in July and really struggled. He has a 6.52 ERA, 1.76 WHIP and 6.1 K/9 in just 19.1 innings. The Indians contributed to that on July 10, scoring four runs in 5.2 innings, 7 hits, 3 walks and 6 strikeouts.

Aaron Brooks was originally tabbed as the Saturday starter, but was optioned on Wednesday. He was the main piece in the recent Zobrist deal. It was hinted that LGFT Drew Pomeranz was possible to be the next guy up. But he took the loss in relief last night. Gray has been awesome in July, with just a 2.37 ERA, 0.92 WHIP and 6.4 K/9 in 38 innings covering five starts. He dominated the Tribe on July 12, giving up just 2 hits and a 1 walk in a shutout.

On the Shelf

  • CF Coco Crisp [60 day DL], possible early August return
  • RP Sean Doolittle [60 day DL], possible late August return
  • SP Jesse Hahn [15 day DL], no timetable for return
  • 2B Tyler Ladendorf [60 day DL], no timetable for return
  • SP Jarrod Parker [60 day DL], no timetable for return
  • P Taylor Thompson [60 day DL], possible early August return
  • P Pat Venditte [15 day DL], possible July return

Almanac

W

L

Pct

RS

RA

Pythag

2015

1

2

333

8

7

533

2014

2

4

333

15

40

142

Last 5*

17

22

436

115

184

297

Last 10*

39

44

470

323

390

415

All-Time

1023

901

532

9035

8663

519

*Does not include 2015 stats

Prediction: In the battle of cellar dwellers, I'll call for a split with very little faith in that right now.