Game Preview: A's v. Blue Jays - June 5, 2004

A's look to start another home winning streak, after dropping the second game of a four-game series to Toronto, 6-1. Veterans Tim Hudson and Pat Hentgen square off in this afternoon affair.

Toronto Blue Jays (25-30) vs. Oakland Athletics (29-24)

Date: Saturday, June 05, 2004
First Pitch: 1:05 P.S.T.

Preview: The A's look to bounce back into the win column today as they throw Tim Hudson against 1996 AL Cy Young Award Winner, Pat Hentgen. The A's starting pitching has been outstanding as of late (including Harden's 7 inning, 1 run performance last night), but their bullpen has been shaky and their offense has become anemic. To add to their list of recent troubles, a two out throwing error by recent call-up Esteban German in the eighth inning while only trailing by one run opened the floodgates for a Toronto rally. Newly appointed third baseman, Mark McLemore, asked manager Ken Macha for the night off because of his ailing knee right before the game, and Macha has recently said that he will not play Marco Scutaro at third. On a positive note, Jermaine Dye hit his 3rd homerun in 4 games and every other team in the AL West also suffered a loss allowing the A's to remain 3 1/2 games out.

Pitching Matchup:
Blue Jays – Pat Hentgen, RHP (2-4, 5.71 ERA)
Athletics – Tim Hudson, RHP (5-2, 3.25 ERA)

Comments: Hentgen got tagged with the loss in his last outing against the Mariners as he gave up 4 runs on 8 hits in 5 innings… Hudson is 1-1 in his last 3 starts and gave up 10 hits to Detroit, 9 hits to Boston, and 11 hits to Cleveland coming into today's game… Hentgen is 0-2 in his last 3 starts giving up 10 ERs in 15 IP… Pitching at home this year, Hudson is 2-0 in 4 starts with a 1.74 ERA (3-2, with a 4.20 ERA on the road)… It is rare to see Hentgen go more than 6 innings this year (he's only done it twice in 10 starts) and he has lasted exactly 5 innings in his last 3 starts… In Hudson's last start, 19 of the 22 outs he recorded against Cleveland came via the groundball… Hentgen, who has spent all 14 years of his career with Toronto, will turn 36 in November…

Pitcher v. Batter Matchups: Expect to see veterans Mark McLemore and Eric Karros in today's lineup as they have a .433 and .556 batting average against Hentgen, respectively. In 9 career ABs against Hentgen, Karros has 3 HRs and 7 RBIs and McLemore has 13 hits in 30 ABs to go along with 4 RBIs. A's fans are hoping that Carlos Delgado is not healthy enough to play today as he has lit up Hudson over his career for 4 HRs, 8 hits, and 5 RBIs in 25 ABs. Another Blue Jay who has given Hudson trouble over the years is SS Chris Gomez who has picked up 7 hits in 15 career ABs (.467 BA) against the A's ace.

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