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Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Jinx Ain't Just A Cat

The Angels have been a better road team (45-32) than a home team (45-36) this year.

In the interests of trying to invert Murphy: they might have just won their last game for the year. Not that I necessarily think this, but baseball's a funny game, and hey, anything could happen.

The M's start 4-16, 5.03 ERA Ryan Franklin, while the A's start 11-12, 4.76 ERA Mark Redman. Franklin has a 2.70 ERA in his last three starts, while Redman has a 5.74 ERA in his last three.

Meantime: the Angels will put up John Lackey, 2.70 in his last three and clearly on a streak, vs. 6-6 4.75 ERA Chris Young, who shut out the Halos at home the last time we saw him. And we have to face him minus Garret Anderson, who left today's game early due to a sore knee.

So I'd say the odds tomorrow are pretty even. But losing first place might be the tonic to jolt the A's into action tomorrow. A one game lead is nothing. Like Mike said, we can celebrate -- maybe -- on Sunday.

The odds are even? As an A's fan, I would love to believe it to be the case. Redman's ERA, bad as it is, is misleading. He's actually a good pitcher on the road. But in the Coliseum, he's a disaster - and it's gotten into his head. During the day, he's even worse. Meanwhile, Franklin has been getting his act together.

The Rangers are hopeless. You've got their number. Their only chance is Scioscia's four-man rotation gambit, which may leave Lackey vulnerable.

Anything is possible, and I'd love to be wrong, but the A's have been fading away all month, clinging to first place like a talisman even as the pitching and hitting continued to fail. Harden is our best pitcher, and now even he's been beaten. Meanwhile, the Angels are scratching and clawing and coming away with victories.

And we have Mark Mulder, who shouldn't be starting any more, to look forward to on Friday night. The race may end that evening.

If the A's win now, it will be an extraordinary comeback.

bear88 from the Athletics Nation blog (I like baseballgirl's 'tude, though)

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