Series Preview: Yanks vs. A’s 1 (AKA Damn you, West Coast)

So the 10 P.M. games start tonight. This stupid ritual. Sigh. Anyway, let’s get to it.

The most surprising thing about Oakland this year has been Josh Reddick. He was shipped over to the A’s by the Red Sox in exchange for Andrew Bailey. In a team leading 188 PAs, Reddick is hitting .272/.337/.527, good for a .375 wOBA and a 143 wRC+. Jonny Gomes is riding a 15.6% walk rate and a .200 Iso to a .355 wOBA and a 129 wRC+. Seth Smith, 106 wRC+, and Yoenis Cespedes, 112 wRC+, are also competent hitters, but Cespedes is injured. Despite a 9.9% walk rate, Jemile Weeks is BABIPing .226 and his line is .199/.287/.311, a .277/75 wOBA/wRC+. Cliff Pennington, 65 wRC+, is also an offensive disaster…and so is the entire team. They rank 14th in runs, hits, average, OBP, SLG, wOBA, and wRC+.

On the pitching side of things, they’ll be facing Tyson Ross, BARTOLO COLON, and Tommy Milone. As a team, they’ve got a 3.54 ERA, tied for third with Tampa. They hold sole possession of 5th place in FIP at 3.85. In terms of the individual pitchers, Tyson Ross has thrown just 34.2 innings in 7 starts and they haven’t exactly been good. He’s got a crazy low K% of of 11.2% and his BB% of 9.4 certainly doesn’t help things. As you could guess, his ERA is pretty crappy at 5.73, though his FIP is much more respectable at 4.07. Tommy Milone’s been a touch better with a 6.1 BB% and a 13.9 K%. He’s been better at preventing runs, too, with a 3.75 ERA and a 4.03 FIP. Last but not least, there’s Yankee fan favorite from last year, Bartolo Colon.

Colon’s strikeouts are way down (under 6 K/9, under 15% strikeout rate), but the control has been there (under 2 BB/9, under 4% walk rate). He’s had two disaster starts in which he’s given up 15 of the 29 total runs he’s allowed this year. All told, Bartolo’s got a 4.09 ERA and a 3.95 FIP, though if he’s keeps to his fastball heavy ways, the Yankees may be able to take advantage. If there’s one type of pitcher they can hit, it’s one who throws a lot of fastballs in the zone.