Game Preview: A's vs. Rangers - July 24, 2004

The struggling A's turn to young starter Kirk Saarloos to try to even the series against the front running Texas Rangers. The Rangers send RA Dickey to the mound.

Texas Rangers (55-39), W -1 v. Oakland Athletics (51-44), L-3

Date: Saturday, July 23, 2004
Time: 1:05 P.S.T.
Place: Network Associates Coliseum – Oakland, CA

Preview:The A's continued their recent slide, as they dropped the first game in this crucial three-game series against first place Texas. A's starter Mark Mulder lost for the first time since late April, as he was victimized by yet another big inning. Big innings have been a bugaboo for A's starters all season, and the 6th inning was Mulder's undoing, as he entered the inning with a 3-2 lead and left it losing 7-3. The A's look to turn it around in the last two games in the series, as they turn to youngsters Kirk Saarloos and Rich Harden to get the team back on track.

Pitching Match-up:

Texas – R.A. Dickey, RHP (5-6, 5.71 ERA)
Oakland – Kirk Saarloos, RHP (1-1, 2.65 ERA)


R.A. Dickey: This will be Dickey's second start since going on the disabled list on June 24th. He pitched against the White Sox in his last start and gave up 3 runs (1 earned) in four innings of work in a 12-6 loss. Earlier this year, Dickey was crushed by the A's for nine runs in 4.2 innings on nine hits and three homeruns. He is 0-3 with a 12.19 ERA in four career starts versus Oakland.

Kirk Saarloos: Saarloos had his first bad start against Cleveland as he couldn't get out of the fourth inning. He pitched very well in his first three innings and then gave up a leadoff homerun. After getting two outs, Saarloos could not retire another batter and had to be taken out. As an Astro, Saarloos has appeared in five games against Texas and has a 12.15 ERA in 6.2 innings by giving up nine runs on twelve hits.

Batter v. Pitcher Matchups:
Saarloos v.:
Mench, K – 1 for 3 – 1 2B, 2 RBI
Young, M – 3 for 4 – 1 BB
Soriano, A – 0 for 2

Dickey v.:
Dye, J – 4 for 5 – 2 HR, 6 RBI
Durazo, E – 2 for 5 – 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 RBI
Crosby, B – 2 for 2 – 1 HR, 3 RBI
Chavez, E – 1 for 5 – 2 RBI
Hatteberg, S – 2 for 6 – 1 RBI
Kotsay, M – 1 for 2

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