Oakland (63-62) at Cleveland (50-76)

Fair Currently: Cleveland, OH
Temp: 53° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Thu Aug 26, 2010
Preview | Box Score | Recap

The Oakland Athletics have continued to get outstanding starting pitching as they’ve taken the first two games of their series against the Cleveland Indians.

The Athletics look to maintain that trend when they send Vin Mazzaro(notes) to the mound Thursday night with a chance at their first sweep in Cleveland in eight years.

Oakland (63-62) got seven innings from Gio Gonzalez(notes) and Trevor Cahill(notes) to post easy victories. Gonzalez yielded five singles in a 5-0 victory Tuesday while Cahill gave up an unearned run and seven singles in a 6-1 win Wednesday.

The Athletics are enjoying a run of 17 straight games in which starters have allowed three earned runs or fewer. It’s the longest such streak by the franchise since the 1927 Philadelphia Athletics did it 18 times in a row.

“Everybody here knows what we are capable of doing and it is all kind of coming together,” Cahill said.

Oakland has turned 20 double plays during the run.

“The pitchers are throwing strikes, not walking guys and making the other team put the ball in play, which is helping them go deep into games, but the defense has really helped them,” manager Bob Geren told the Athletics’ official website. “It’s a big part of this streak, even if it’s something that might go unnoticed.”

Mazzaro (6-5, 3.56 ERA) has beaten Cleveland once, allowing one run over 7 1-3 innings of a 3-1 victory July 4. His other start against the Indians came on Independence Day in 2009, when he gave up five runs over six innings of a 5-2 loss.

The right-hander has gone 0-3 with a 3.82 ERA in his last five outings. He yielded three runs over 6 1-3 innings of a 5-4 victory over Tampa Bay on Friday.

The Athletics have gotten plenty of production from third base in this series. Jeff Larish(notes) had a two-run homer Tuesday while Kevin Kouzmanoff(notes) doubled, tripled and drove in three runs Wednesday.

The last sweep for Oakland at Progressive Field came in a four-game series Aug. 19-22, 2002.

Cleveland (50-76) has been the perfect opponent for Oakland’s streaking starters. The Indians have totaled four runs during their current five-game losing streak.

Justin Masterson(notes) (4-12, 5.33) will start for the Indians after allowing five runs over six innings in a 6-0 loss at Detroit on Friday.

The right-hander is 0-3 with a 6.75 ERA in four starts against AL West opponents this year, including an 11-0 defeat to Oakland on April 25 in which he gave up seven runs in four innings. Masterson is 0-2 with a 13.50 ERA in two career starts against the A’s.

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Starting Pitchers

V. Mazzaro Atl vs. J. Masterson Bos
6-8 Record 6-13
4.27 ERA 4.70
79 K 140
50 BB 73
1.45 WHIP 1.50


Thursday, Aug 26