Blog Entry

On Deck: Cahill, Wilson battle for West supremacy

Posted on: May 9, 2011 7:09 pm


By Evan Brunell

BEST MATCHUP: This is a nice meeting of pitchers who have been on fire all season. Trevor Cahill is seeking his sixth win and has yet to register a loss. The A's righty was in the Cy Young mix last year and is clearly inserting himself in the discussion this year. The 23-year-old pitched a bit over his head last year and while he is obviously doing so this season with a 1.79 ERA, he's taken another leap forward this season by upping his strikeout percentage. He'll be opposed by Rangers ace C.J. Wilson who continues to find the starting rotation to his liking. Now in his second season starting after being converted from relief, Wilson is 4-1 with a 2.92 ERA and is gearing up for a massive payday as a free agent. Both teams are scrapping to stay close to the first-place Angels. With identical 19-18 records, the loser will drop to .500 while the victor will hope for an Angels loss later that night to the White Sox to pull to within one game of the division lead. Athletics at Rangers, 8:05 p.m. ET

LOSING STREAK: The Rockies are losers of four straight and as Ian Stewart can tell you, manager Jim Tracy is getting irritable. Colorado is still in first, but its margin of error is down to one game. Fortunately, arguably the team's best pitcher in sophomore Jhoulys Chacin will toe the mound with a 2.83 ERA and has clearly proven his ability to handle Coors Field. The game is in the Rox's favor, as the Mets will counter with lefty Chris Capuano and his 5.40 ERA. Colorado swept the Mets in four games to begin the season, so the beginning of the series could be a welcome breath of air for the 18-14 squad. Rockies at Mets, 8:40 p.m. ET

FIRST PLACE BATTLES: Just like the Rangers, A's and Rockies, the Phillies and Marlins tonight will pit two teams at the top of the standings with a chance to take a step forward. The Phillies are clinging to first place despite an offense that hasn't delivered on its promise while the scorching Marlins are only two back. Unfortunately for Florida, the Phillies will have a shot to feast on Javier Vazquez who has done nothing to reverse his slide into mediocrity that began last season with the Yankees. The righty will look to drive his ERA below 6.00 while Philly counters with its own struggling Joe Blanton fresh off the disabled list. Blanton's 5.92 ERA isn't pretty, but allowed just four runs over his past 14 innings before hitting the shelf. Phillies at Marlins, 7:10 p.m. ET

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On Deck: Cahill, Wilson battle for West supremacy

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On Deck: Cahill, Wilson battle for West supremacy

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