Houston Astros (62-80) at Oakland Athletics (80-61), 3:05 p.m. (CST)
TV: CSN Houston, MLB.TV
Radio: KBME 790 AM, KLAT 1010 AM
A's SBNation Blog: Athletics Nation
LHP Dallas Keuchel (10-9, 3.03 ERA, 1.19 WHIP) vs. RHP Jason Hammel (10-10, 3.58 ERA, 1.15 WHIP)
The less we talk about Saturday's game the better. Lets just jump right in to Sunday's game. The Astro couldn't have asked for a better pitcher to turn the page with than Dallas Keuchel. Keuchel has been the best pitcher on the Astros staff this season, though Collin McHugh has been making a strong case. The lefty posted 3.21 ERA in 42 innings in August. He is coming off a seven innings of two-run baseball against the Rangers.
This season against the A's, Keuchel has a 2.01 ERA in 22.1 innings - 14 strikeouts and eight walks. Keuchel has allowed just two runs over his last two starts (16 IP) against Oakland. Even with that record, of course Josh Donaldson has a positive record against Keuchel - batting .316 (6-19) with two extra-base hits. Nate Freiman, platoon first baseman, is batting .545 (6-11) with with five extra-base hits. Jed Lowrie and Derrick Norris each have two doubles in 10+ at-bats against Keuchel.
Countering Keuchel is Jason Hammel, who has allowed just two runs over his last 15 innings of work. That included a one-run outing over seven innings against Houston on August 26. In his previous outing against Houston, he gave up eight over 4.1 innings. Even with that success, the Astros have poor record against Hammel. Robbie Grossman and Dexter Fowler each have a home run against Hammel in their career.