The OAKLAND and the TAMPA BAY will both be gunning for a victory on 9/14/2018 at 7:10 PM when they meet in a game matchup.
GAME: Oakland Athletics (89-58) at Tampa Bay Rays (80-65)
DATE/TIME: Friday, September 14 – 7:10 PM EST
WHERE: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida
TV: 7:10 PM
PREDICTION: TAMPA BAY , OAKLAND
Oddsmakers currently have the TAMPA BAY listed as point favorites versus the OAKLAND, while the game’s total is sitting at .
The Tampa Bay Rays are the closest pursuers for the American League’s second wild-card berth, but they need a three-game weekend sweep of the visiting Oakland Athletics to have any realistic chance of overtaking them. Tampa Bay enters Friday’s series opener eight games back after Oakland suffered a 5-3 loss to Baltimore on Thursday to see its six-game winning streak come to an end.
The Rays are 9-2 this month and have won 18 of their last 22 games, making manager Kevin Cash ecstatic over his team’s strong finish. “Getting to watch this from a really good seat, it’s pretty exciting,” Cash told reporters after Wednesday’s 3-1 victory over Cleveland. “I hope it’s exciting for our fans. Because these guys, they come every day, they bring a lot of effort, they’re fun to watch and they’re very talented.” The Athletics fell 3 1/2 games behind first-place Houston in the AL West and 1 1/2 in back of the New York Yankees for the first wild card with Thursday’s setback. Stephen Piscotty belted his ninth homer in 23 contests – he has 24 on the season – while extending his career-best hitting streak to 14 games.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, NBCS California (Oakland), FS Sun (Tampa Bay)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Athletics RH Edwin Jackson (5-3, 3.26 ERA) vs. Rays RH Diego Castillo (3-2, 3.45)
Jackson is 1-1 with a 5.09 ERA over his last five starts and has worked more than five innings just one during that stretch. The 35-year-old lasted just three frames in his last turn, when he gave up four runs and five hits in a no-decision against Texas. Jackson is 3-3 with a 3.98 ERA in seven career appearances (six starts) against Tampa Bay, including a 149-pitch no-hitter in 2010 while with Arizona.
Castillo will take the mound as the “opener” in his seventh start of the season. The 24-year-old rookie opened against Cleveland on Monday and gave up one run and one hit in two innings. Castillo has a solid 1.04 WHIP and is limiting hitters to a .185 batting average in 47 frames.
1. Oakland OF Nick Martini recorded three hits and a walk on Thursday and is 6-for-8 with two walks over his last three games.
2. Tampa Bay OF Tommy Pham is 26-for-65 with three homers and 11 RBIs during his career-best 16-game hitting streak.
3. Athletics RHP Trevor Cahill (back) was scratched from Saturday’s start and returned to Oakland to undergo an MRI exam.
PREDICTION: Rays 5, Athletics 4