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Preview: Athletics (83-68) at Rangers (60-91)
BT Movements  ·  Line Movements
Game: 3
Venue: Globe Life Park in Arlington
Date: July 27, 2014 7:05 PM EDT
  

The Oakland Athletics rebounded from a rare poor pitching performance by giving the ball to one of their 11-game winners and finding their power stroke offensively.

Now the A's are turning to their other 11-win pitcher as they go for the series win in Arlington.

Scott Kazmir looks to extend his outstanding stretch on the mound Sunday night when he tries to lead MLB-best Oakland to its eighth victory in nine road meetings with the baseball-worst Texas Rangers.

Oakland starters have the AL's lowest ERA at 3.14, including a MLB-best 2.21 mark since July 3. The A's, however, suffered a 4-1 loss in Friday's opener when struggling Jason Hammel allowed four runs over 5 2-3 innings.

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Sonny Gray made certain Oakland would avoid its first back-to-back defeats since July 11-12 on Saturday. He gave up one run over 6 2-3 innings to win his fifth straight start and 12th on the season in a 5-1 victory.

It certainly helped when Yoenis Cespedes, John Jaso, Josh Donaldson and Josh Reddick each connected for home runs in a six-batter span over the sixth and seventh innings for the A's (64-39).

Cespedes has a .345 average and three homers while hitting safely in each of his seven games since the All-Star break.

'Home runs are a big part of our game," said manager Bob Melvin, whose club's four homers were its most since hitting a season-best five May 26.

Oakland, which has a two-game lead in the AL West, appears to be in good hands as goes after its seventh win in 10 games.

Kazmir (11-3, 2.32 ERA), who owns baseball's fourth-best ERA, has limited opponents to one earned run or fewer while going at least seven innings in three straight starts. The left-hander is also 6-1 with a 2.09 ERA with 69 strikeouts in his last 10.

The A's have lost only five times in his 20 starts, though one of those defeats came Tuesday. He allowed two runs - one earned - over seven innings in a 3-2, 12-inning home loss to Houston in his first start following the All-Star break.

"He pitched in the same fashion he has all year for us," Melvin told MLB's official website.

Kazmir is 7-4 with a 3.22 ERA in 15 career starts versus Texas, but 1-2 with a 5.01 ERA in his last four in Arlington. He snapped a three-game losing streak to the Rangers on April 29 when he allowed three runs over five innings in a 9-3 road win.

Shin-Soo Choo has gone 5 for 14 with a homer when facing the All-Star, but Alex Rios is batting .217 with 11 strikeouts in his 46 career at_bats and Adrian Beltre is 6 for 29 with 11 strikeouts.

The Rangers (41-63), who have dropped 28 of 34, have totaled just nine runs and hit .233 over their last five games.

Miles Mikolas (1-2, 7.48) hopes to build on the best start of his career after limiting the Yankees to two runs and four hits over 7 1-3 innings in Monday's 4-2 road win.

"If I just take what I did there and kind of realize that it doesn't matter so much who's in the box, but the pitches that I make to get outs," said Mikolas, who went 0-2 with a 10.05 ERA in his previous three outings.

The rookie right-hander has allowed 14 runs and 21 hits over nine total innings while dropping his two home starts.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

 SERIES AT A GLANCE
GAME 1
Athletics at Rangers
Fri, Jul 25 Final 1 to 4
 Boxscores    Recaps
GAME 2
Athletics at Rangers
Sat, Jul 26 Final 5 to 1
 Boxscores    Recaps
GAME 3
Athletics at Rangers
Sun, Jul 27 Final 9 to 3
 Boxscores    Recaps

 CURRENT LAS VEGAS LINE
 Team  ML   RUN   O/U 
 OAK  -215   -135   9 
 TEX  +195   +115   
LAS VEGAS LINE MOVEMENTS

 CURRENT SPORTSBOOK LINE
 Team  ML   RUN   O/U 
 OAK  -250   -145   9 
 TEX  +210   +125   
OFFSHORE LINE MOVEMENTS

 BETTING TRENDS
 Team  ML   RUN   O/U 
 OAK  85%   73%   34% 
 TEX  15%   27%   66% 
BT MOVEMENTS

 MLB HEAD TO HEAD
 Jul 26, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 OAK 5 Cover: +100 
 TEX 1 Under: 6 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Jul 25, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 OAK 1 Under: 5 
 TEX 4 Cover: +158 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Jun 18, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 TEX 2 Under: 6 
 OAK 4 Cover: +100 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Jun 17, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 TEX 6 Over: 16 
 OAK 10 Cover: +100 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Jun 16, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 TEX 14 Cover: +155 
 OAK 8 Over: 22 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Apr 30, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 OAK 12 Cover: +105 
 TEX 1 Over: 13 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Apr 29, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 OAK 9 Cover: +100 
 TEX 3 Over: 12 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Apr 28, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 OAK 4 Cover: +116 
 TEX 0 Under: 4 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Apr 23, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 TEX 3 Cover: +150 
 OAK 0 Under: 3 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps
 Apr 22, 2014  Score  ATS Results 
 TEX 5 Cover: +145 
 OAK 4 Over: 9 
 Tools:   Boxscores    Recaps

 MLB PREVIEWS
 Sunday, Jul 27
 
    Blue Jays at Yankees
1:05 PM EDT
    Nationals at Reds
1:10 PM EDT
    Diamondbacks at Phillies
1:35 PM EDT
    Red Sox at Rays
1:40 PM EDT
    Indians at Royals
2:10 PM EDT
    Mets at Brewers
2:10 PM EDT
    White Sox at Twins
2:10 PM EDT
    Marlins at Astros
2:10 PM EDT
    Cardinals at Cubs
2:20 PM EDT
    Tigers at Angels
3:35 PM EDT
    Orioles at Mariners
4:10 PM EDT
    Pirates at Rockies
4:10 PM EDT
    Padres at Braves
5:05 PM EDT
    Athletics at Rangers
7:05 PM EDT
    Dodgers at Giants
8:05 PM EDT
 
 
 
  
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