The Cleveland Indians will head out west to take on the Oakland Athletics for a three game series. Both teams are playing great baseball, and are both 8-2 in their last ten games. The Cleveland Indians were expected to contend for the American League pennant this season, while the Oakland Athletics are starting to show signs of improving as a franchise.
The Athletics come into this series in third place in the American League West, trailing both the Astros and Mariners. The Cleveland Indians are once again leading the American League Central, and have broken open a 8.5 game lead over the Minnesota Twins. The Cleveland Indians are -170 over the Oakland Athletics on Friday night.
Suddenly Red Hot Oakland A’s
The Oakland Athletics head into this series coming off of a four game sweep of the Detroit Tigers. The Athletics appeared to be headed for another disappointing season, but are 8-2 over their last 10 games and have an improved roster. Oakland still doesn’t appear as a true threat to challenge for the American League West title, but are headed in the right direction.
The A’s have a very potent offense that ranks 6th in all of baseball in total runs scored. Veteran Jed Lowrie has been the best hitter for the A’s this season, and leads the team in most offensive categories. Khris Davis is the power hitter for the team, and has belted a team high 20 home runs. Oakland faces a tough challenge this week in the Indians overpowering pitching staff.
Bauer Starts For Indians
Hard throwing right hander, Trevor Bauer, will start for the Indians in the series opener on Friday. Bauer has had an interesting season on and off the field, but is proving to be one of the top pitchers in the American League. Bauer is just 7-5 in 2018, but his 2.44 earned run average ranks among the top ERA’s in the American League.
The Indians had a rough series against the St. Louis Cardinals, but are still playing great baseball once again. Jose Ramirez burst onto the scene last season, and has continued to produce on offense for them this season. Ramirez has belted 23 home runs and also gets on base at a .395 clip. The Indians have a proven and experience line up and will try to make life difficult for A’s pitchers all weekend.
Cleveland Rocks Athletics
The A’s were able to dominate the Twins this past week, but the Indians are a much tougher test. Paul Blackburn makes the start for Oakland on Friday night, and things have not gone well for him this season. Blackburn is just 1-2 with a 8.83 ERA so far in 2018, and things won’t get easier against the Indians.
Cleveland appears to be one of the favorites to reach the World Series again in 2018. The Indians have a dominant starting rotation, but also have an offense that scores runs and wears down opposing pitchers. Look for the Indians to to hit their way to a series opening victory. Take the Cleveland Indians -170 over the Oakland Athletics on Friday.