The last time the Oakland Athletics took the field — that would be Sunday for those not paying attention — they started southpaw Dallas Braden and not only did he go the distance and get the win, he pitched a perfect game too.
The A’s defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 4-0 and upped their regular season record to 17-15, a single game back of the AL West-leading Texas Rangers and guess who they begin a series with on Tuesday?
Why, those very same Texas Rangers.
At online sportsbooks, the Rangers and Athletics are listed at +200 and +300 respectively to take the AL West division.
The A’s are in Texas and send righty Trevor Cahill to the mound in Game 1 of their Best in the West, three-gamer — Cahill probably won’t pitch a perfect game, although he is 4-1 straight up in his last five overall against the Rangers.
However, in his last 15 road starts, Cahill is 5-10 SU and in his last nine away games, he is only 2-7 SU.
The Athletics have fared well in their last 15 overall against the Rangers, going 11-4 SU and in their last 12 road games against Texas, there have been 2 Overs, 9 Unders and a Push.
But the Oakland Athletics are only 1-7 SU in their last eight road games.
One of their prized offseason acquisitions, Cliff Lee has pitched well for the Seattle Mariners but unfortunately, the M’s haven’t been able to support Lee.
After a stint on the disabled list, Lee has started two games for the Mariners, with 13 strikeouts, an ERA of 2.40, yet he is winless.
Lee will look for his first win with Seattle as the Mariners begin a three-game road set against the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday.
There is no reason to think that Lee can’t get win No. 1 with his new team, as he is 9-2 SU in his last 11 road games and in nine of his last 13 road starts have gone Under.
But the Mariners, picked by many to take the AL West and currently listed at +210 to take the division, have really struggled out of the gate.
In their last nine overall, the Mariners are 1-8 SU and in their last 12 road games, they are 3-9 SU.
Then again, the M’s are 8-3 SU in their last 11 overall against the Baltimore Orioles.
Will the Mariners get it together and justify their standing as one of the favorites to take the AL West?
The season is still young.
Have a good week.
Check the updated baseball odds
Posted: 5/12/10 3:20PM ET