Game 8, A’s at Mariners
Rowland-Smith vs Duchscherer, 3:40 pm.
The M’s open at home today, looking to put a bad road trip behind them. Randy Johnson throws out the first pitch, and I expect he’ll get a tremendous ovation. He deserves it. And, just so I can be the four millionth person to make this joke, perhaps the M’s can tell him to just stay on the mound afterwards, because this team could use him.
Hyphen takes the hill for the M’s. Back in the friendly confines of Safeco Field, he should pound the strike zone and make the A’s earn their way on base. This team is built to prevent hits on balls in play, so RRS just needs to throw strikes and let the park and defense do the rest.
Wak shifts the line-up again, moving Bradley down to the six spot to take some pressure off of him. Also, Kotchman ends up hitting 7th even with an RHP on the mound, as apparently his appeal to Wak that he can handle the third spot only got him a few days at the top of the order – Gutierrez is in the three hole tonight, and will probably remain near the top of the order until he cools off. Long term, this line-up doesn’t really work, as you don’t really want Gutierrez, Lopez, and Griffey trying to be your RBI guys against a right-handed pitcher, but as long as its just a short-term thing until Milton gets going, it’s not the end of the world.