On Deck: Twins, A's look to continue surge
Posted on: June 22, 2011 4:49 pm
Edited on: June 23, 2011 12:57 am
By Evan Brunell
BEST MATCHUP: It's not often that you can say Cliff Lee goes up against a pitcher with a lower ERA than him, especially since Philadelphia has cornered the market on aces. And yet that's what's going to happen on Wednesday when Lee takes his 3.12 ERA and goes up against... Kyle Lohse. Yup. You may not have realized it, but Lohse is actually putting together a fine season -- in fact, his finest yet. Lohse is inducing weak contact like never before and has become stingy with control, and there isn't anything much screaming for a regression, although he, like most other pitchers, is still in over his head with a 2.88 ERA. Phillies at Cardinals, 8:15 p.m. ET (Watch live)
WHERE'D HE COME FROM? The headline for this game is about Ryan Vogelsong, who is 4-1 with a sparkling 1.96 ERA in 65 2/3 innings. This is Vogelsong's first year in the majors since 2006 and he entered the season with a career 5.86 ERA. Those waiting for the wheels to fall off may have to wait a bit longer, because luck isn't part of Vogelsong's success; he's pitching well, thanks to a myriad of reasons but in part due to junking his slider and returning to his changeup. He's also had tremendous success with his fastball. But Vogelsong will go up against an opponent that has roared out of seemingly nowhere in winning 15 of their last 17, pulling to 6 1/2 games out of first place. Minnesota still has a long road to go, but it's still an impressive return to relevance. Nick Blackburn will toe the hill for the team. Twins at Giants, 10:15 p.m. ET (Watch live)
MIDAS TOUCH: The Athletics have won 7 of 11 since new manager Bob Melvin took over, but it's not just Melvin that's responsible for Oakland's success. You can add the alternate gold tops to the mix, as the A's are 10-3 while wearing the alternate jerseys and have worn them over the past six games. It will be seven on Wednesday even though the club is in New York, as the A's want to keep the good times rolling and starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez is a big fan of the gold tops. Gonzalez will battle R.A. Dickey. A loss would send the Mets to a 35-39 record, while the A's would improve to 35-40. Athletics at Mets, 7:10 p.m. ET (Watch live)
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