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Baltimore at Oakland

Venue: O.co Coliseum
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The Baltimore Orioles continue to roll forward with solid pitching. The Oakland Athletics would like to recapture the same power they displayed in a red-hot start to the season.

Baltimore will try to stick to the same formula as it seeks an eighth win in 10 games Saturday in Oakland.

The Orioles (14-9) claimed a 3-0 victory Friday, quieting the Athletics' bats for a second straight night after a 10-2 win Thursday. Baltimore has a 1.91 ERA over the last five games, including a masterful performance Friday from Wei-Yin Chen, who gave up three hits in eight innings.

His outing helped drop the Orioles' opponent batting average to .228. That's among the best in baseball as is the bullpen's 2.31 ERA. Closer Jim Johnson improved to 9 for 9 in save opportunities by closing out Friday's win.

The Athletics (13-11), meanwhile, have lost seven of eight. Behind the slide has been a serious drop in power production. They hit 19 home runs during a 9-2 start, the most in the majors during that span, but have just five homers while going 4-9 since. They're homerless in five of the last seven.

Jed Lowrie hasn't homered since hitting three in his first seven contests, and Coco Crisp has one over his last 13 games after going deep in four straight games from April 5-9.

The loss of Yoenis Cespedes, who had three home runs before succumbing to a strained left thumb April 12, also hasn't helped, though he's likely to be activated for Sunday's game.

Oakland received a good pitching performance Friday from Tommy Milone, who gave up only an unearned run over 6 2-3 innings. But the defense didn't lend much help as the Athletics committed a season-high three errors.

"When you are in close games like that - defensive miscues end up really costing you," manager Bob Melvin said. "It's maddening for us."

Chris Tillman (0-1, 5.23 ERA) will try to continue the Orioles' strong pitching. Though his numbers aren't impressive, he's coming off his best outing of the year, holding Toronto to one run and four hits over 6 2-3 innings in a 2-1 win.

"I was able to get ahead with my pitches early and my secondary stuff was there for me," he said. "I was able to pound the strike zone early and kind of make the pitches when I needed to."

Oakland starter A.J. Griffin (2-1, 4.50 ERA) will face Baltimore for the first time as he tries to shake off the worst performance of his young career. Griffin saw his ERA double after he surrendered a career-worst nine runs - seven earned - and eight hits over four innings in a 9-6 loss at Boston on Monday.

He hadn't surrendered more than five runs in his first 18 major league starts.

"It humbles you a little bit," Griffin said. "Obviously not going to go out there and be lights out every time."

Tillman didn't record a decision in his only previous start against the Athletics, giving up two runs and six hits in 4 1-3 innings May 27, 2011.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Probable Starters

Chris Tillman, RHP
2013 stats
20.2 Innings Pitched 24.0
0-1 Wins-Losses 2-1
5.23 Earned Run Average 4.50
11 Walks 8
18 Strikeouts 16
98 Pitches Per Start 99
Career vs. opponent
4.1 Innings Pitched -
0-0 Wins-Losses ---
2.08 Earned Run Average -

A.J. Griffin, RHP
Weather
weather image  Mostly sunny. Mild.
Hi TempLo TempWindHumidityPrecip %
70°F49°F9mph/W54%1%
Standings
TeamStandingsWLPct.GBL 10Strk
Baltimore1st AL East7352.584-7-3 W 4
Oakland2nd AL West7452.58722-8 L 1
 
 

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Game Odds
AwayLineHomeLine
Baltimore 120 Oakland -130
Injuries
Baltimore
PlayerInjury
M. MachadoKnee
J. SantanaShoulder
M. WietersElbow
Oakland
PlayerInjury
K. BlanksCalf
A. GriffinElbow
J. LowrieFinger
J. ParkerElbow
N. PuntoHamstring
 
Series Game Log
DateatResult/TimeWinnerLoser
Apr 14LAAOAK 3-2Johnson Frieri 
Apr 15LAAOAK 10-9Johnson Herrera 
Apr 16LAALAA 5-4Smith Pomeranz 
May 30OAKOAK 9-5Pomeranz Richards 
May 31OAKOAK 11-3Rodriguez Skaggs 
Jun 1OAKOAK 6-3Gray Weaver 
Jun 9LAALAA 4-1Richards Chavez 
Jun 10LAALAA 2-1Rasmus Francis 
Jun 11LAAOAK 7-1Milone Weaver 
Aug 22OAK10:05 PM EDT  
Aug 23OAK 9:05 PM EDT  
Aug 24OAK 8:05 PM EDT  
Aug 28LAA10:05 PM EDT  
Aug 29LAA10:05 PM EDT  
Aug 30LAA 9:05 PM EDT  
Aug 31LAA 3:35 PM EDT  
Sep 22OAK10:05 PM EDT  
Sep 23OAK10:05 PM EDT  
Sep 24OAK 3:35 PM EDT