Oakland (71-54) at Toronto (66-59)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Toronto, ON
Temp: 55° F
  • Game info: 7:07 pm EDT Tue Aug 22, 2006
Preview | Box Score | Recap

While the Oakland Athletics are surging toward their first postseason berth in three years, things don’t look like they could get much worse for the Toronto Blue Jays.

The Athletics (71-54) look to win their fourth straight contest when their three-game series against the Blue Jays (66-59) continues at Rogers Centre on Tuesday.

Toronto led Oakland 8-0 after two innings in Monday’s series opener, but ended up losing 12-10.

The A’s tied an Oakland record for the biggest comeback victory, but their win was overshadowed by a scuffle between Blue Jays manager John Gibbons and Toronto starting pitcher Ted Lilly.

Lilly was pulled in the third inning when the A’s scored seven runs, and Gibbons chewed out his pitcher, who refused to give him the ball. After Lilly left the field, the two confronted each other in the tunnel between the dugout and the clubhouse, and Gibbons wound up with a bloody nose.

“We were on the verge of something regrettable happening,” Lilly said. “We were yelling at each other face to face.”

Gibbons met with Lilly after the game.

“We hashed it out. Everything is fine now,” Gibbons said.

Team president Paul Godfrey said he didn’t think Gibbons or Lilly needed discipline.

The Athletics scored 11 straight runs as Dan Haren set an Oakland record by getting the victory despite allowing nine runs.

“It’s amazing how that stuff happens,” Haren said. “Momentum is an incredible thing.”

Bobby Kielty homered and drove in four runs, while Jason Kendall went 4-for-5 with a two-run double for the A’s. Kendall is batting .467 (14-for-30) in his last seven games.

The first-place A’s, who have not made the playoffs since winning the AL West in 2003, have a five-game lead over the Los Angeles Angels in the division and have won 18 of their last 22 games.

Brad Halsey (3-3, 4.50 ERA) makes his seventh start of the year on Tuesday after being recalled from Triple-A Sacramento.

Halsey started the season in the bullpen before going 1-2 with a 5.63 ERA in six starts from May 2-30. The left-hander returned to the bullpen to make 25 more appearances, but was optioned to the minors on Aug. 9 after his worst performance of the season.

Halsey allowed six runs and three hits while walking two in just one-third of an inning of relief in Oakland’s 14-0 loss to Texas.

He has not received a decision in three career games, including one start, against the Blue Jays, allowing one run and five hits over 7 2-3 innings in those contests.

Toronto has lost three of its last four games and trails the Chicago White Sox by 7 1/2 games in the wild-card race.

Troy Glaus hit his 34th home run of the season and third in his last four games on Monday for the Blue Jays. Center fielder Vernon Wells went 4-for-5 with three RBIs, and is batting .545 (12-for-22) with two doubles and eight RBIs in his last five games at Rogers Centre.

A.J. Burnett (5-5, 4.29) tries to extend his season-high winning streak to four games when he takes the mound for Toronto on Tuesday. Burnett, who signed a $55 million contract in the offseason, has a 2.70 ERA during the win streak after going 2-5 with a 4.84 ERA in his first 10 starts of the year.

The right-hander allowed two runs and four hits in seven innings of a 6-2 victory over Tampa Bay on Thursday.

Two of Burnett’s wins during his current streak have come at Rogers Center, where he is 3-1 with a 3.82 ERA in six starts this year.

Burnett, who spent his first seven seasons with Florida, has never faced Oakland.

Related Articles

Starting Pitchers

B. Halsey NYY vs. A. Burnett Pit
5-4 Record 10-8
4.67 ERA 3.98
53 K 118
46 BB 39
1.63 WHIP 1.30


Tuesday, Aug 22