San Francisco Giants @ Oakland Athletics
To conclude the night, we have a matchup between two teams from the Bay area ,as the San Francisco Giants will go up against the Oakland Athletics. This will be the first game of three game series between these two teams. The Giants are entering this game struggling, on a two game winning streak and are now 38-32 on the season. They will have to play on the road tonight where they are only 17-18 this year. As for the Athletics, they have quietly begun to hit a hot streak and are now on a three game winning streak and have won 8 of their last 9 games. The Athletics have also been a hot team at home, where they are 7-1 in their last 8 home games, and are 18-17 on the season. In tonight’s pitching matchup, the Giants will have Tim Lincecum on the mound up against Oakland’s Jarrod Parker. In case you have not heard, this has not been a typical year for Tim Lincecum. We are now almost done with June, and are 14 starts into the season, yet Lincecum’s numbers are still horrendous. He has an ERA of 6.19 and is 2-8. You cannot even make an argument that Lincecum has improved throughout the year. In fact, he has actually regressed some. He started out April with an ERA of 5.74, then finished May with an ERA of 5.88, and through his first three starts in June, he has an ERA of 7.56. Those three starts have come against Seattle, Texas, and San Diego. Now certainly the Rangers are a respectable opponent, however many people would say at Seattle and at San Diego should have been easy wins. They would argue that he would be able to straighten his stuff out against Oakland, however I think it is fair to say that the Athletics are better than both the Mariners and Padres. Through seven starts on the road and at home, Lincecum has pitched better at home and has managed an ERA under 5.00, however this time around he will be on the road where he has an ERA of 8.13 and a 1-4 record. Lincecum will be up against the Oakland offense that ranks 24th in runs scored, however remember that they are in the midst of a hot streak. As for Jarrod Parker, he has been very solid this year and has an ERA of 2.82 and a record of 3-3. Now in three of his last four starts, Parker has not allowed an earned run. Now in the one start where he did allow an earned run, he gave up six against Arizona. As for the teams that he shutout, he was able to shutout the Rockies (in Colorado), the Rangers, and the Twins. Pitching in Colorado is no easy task, nor is pitching against the Rangers. But as good pitchers do, he dominated against a bad team in the Twins. Parker has specifically dominated at home this season with an ERA of 1.59 and a record of 1-1. In tonight’s game he will be up against the struggling Giants offense that is ranked 23rd in runs scored. It should be noted that the Athletics are 4-2 in their last six games against the Giants, and are 5-0 in their last five games at home against the Giants. As for the odds surrounding this matchup, Oakland is currently being favored at -110 to win this game over the Giants at +104.
Bottomline: Although I do not believe that Tim Lincecum is this bad, and he should be able to turn things around, I am not going to believe it until I see it. Here he is not up against an easy opponent, as the Athletics are playing solid baseball right now and are a tough team at home. On top of that Lincecum has specifically struggled on the road where as Parker has dominated at home. In my opinion, this leads to an Oakland win.
My Pick: Oakland Athletics
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