Thursday, April 27 vs. A’s
Probables- Jharel Cotton vs. Ricky Nolasco
In the rubber match of the series, the A’s will send out Jharel Cotton. Cotton has had a decent season so far, going 2-2 with a 4.76 ERA. However, he had his worst outing of the season against the Angels in the first series between the two teams. Cotton allowed five runs in 4.1 innings pitched. He allowed eight hits while walking two. He has not faced the Angels batters many times, but nearly every starter has a hit against Cotton at one point or another.
The Angels counter the A’s young gun with local boy Ricky Nolasco. Nolasco will coming off decent rest, as his last start was skipped as he worked through some “mechanical issues” according to manager Mike Scioscia. Nolasco has been very susceptible to the long ball this season, giving up seven in his first four starts. The Angels are hoping this extra rest will provide him with time to work out the chinks in his game. While he has found some success against current Athletics hitters, he has given up six big flies to five different players. Nolasco will have to keep the ball in play and allow the elite defense behind him to make plays. If he can’t do that, the Angels will be in trouble.
Prediction- Angels 7, Athletics 6 in extras