Series Preview: Oakland Athletics @ Seattle Mariners

Seattle: 42-70
Oakland: 56-54

-130.6 (30th) -1.4 -5.1 (17th) Oakland
FIELDING (UZR) 14.2 (10th) 0.0 17.8 (8th) Oakland
4.2 (17th) 2.2 2.4 (16th) Oakland
-28.1 (29th) -1.7 -17.1 (24th) Oakland
-140.3 (28th) -0.7 -1.9 (17th) OAKLAND






Well I expect this preview to get a load of traction what with there being nothing better to talk about than this upcoming series against fellow October fishing bound Oakland. Of course, who can stay away when there's three game with the Athletics on tap? Seattle-Oakland games are always the pinnacle of excitement.

I am confident the players will have a similar reaction to the media as when the hitting coach was fired and put the blame on themselves for not performing. If so they would be mostly correct. As Jeff mentioned, it ultimately comes down to the players to perform. Will this be a kick in their behind? Is that even possible? I would bet on seeing a lot more early practices over the next two months.

Mon Aug 09, 19:10: Doug Fister vs. Vin Mazzaro

Tue Aug 10, 19:10: Felix Hernandez vs. Brett Anderson*

Wed Aug 11, 12:40: Luke French* vs. Dallas Braden*

Meanwhile, Doug Fister starts tonight and we can go back to hoping that he can shake off the home runs and general badness from his previous two starts. All things considered, Fister has had a remarkably good season. He has performed at a level beyond what anyone reasonably expected. I hope he is able to maintain that.

I wouldn't blame Felix if he began to set things in cruise control these last 50 or so games. He has no chance at the Cy Young or any meaningful title. He has his contract. I do not imply that I think he will mentally check out and pitch poorly. I could, however, see him seek out more (ground ball) contact in order to try and get through games faster. This isn't a prediction either, rather more of a pre-hindsight guess as to why his strikeout rate dips in September. if it does.

When Luke French avoids the walks, he becomes passable. This is almost universally true. His last two starts have seen just one walk and a whole lot of strikes being thrown. At the very least, that makes for shorter games. Huzzah for shorter games!

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