A's Finish First-Half On A High Note

Daric Barton and the A's are getting on base (Photo: Courtesy of Yardbarker.com)

The Oakland Athletics may be 7.5 games behind the first-place Texas Rangers, but the team’s morale remains positive. On Sunday, the A’s finished their series against the visiting Angels, with a series winning 5-2 finale. Trevor Cahill, who will be accompanied by Andrew Bailey, won his ninth game of the season to improve to 9-3. Cahill went seven strong innings and lowered his ERA to 2.94. Cahill and Bailey will be the A’s two representatives at the All-Star game, but Bailey will be the one eligible to play.

Heading into the break, the A’s currently sit at 43-46 and hope to improve in the second-half of the season. During the first-half of the season, the A’s offense was rather inconsistent and had a difficult time putting together socring situation. As a result, the A’s pitching staff has not had much support.

Luckily for Oakland, however, young studs like Cahill, Gio Gonzalez and Vin Mazzaro have kept Oakland close enough heading into the second-half. Gonzalez, who has recorded seven victories already this season, has been making great strides and has shown glimpses of his potential. As for Mazzaro, who has filled in for Dallas Braden, he has recorded four victories of his own this season.

Once the A’s get Brett Anderson and Braden back, the rotation should be in good shape. The A’s head into the second-half with a rotation that is anchored by Ben Sheets, who has been making some progress this season since missing all of 2009 due to injury.

Offensively, the A’s will need to see more consistency from their lineup. Daric Barton, Ryan Sweeney and Kurt Suzuki are MVPs on offense, but the A’s still have some talented players in Adam Rosales, Coco Crisp and Rajai Davis. In fact, upon returning from his DL stint, Crisp has been rather impressive. If the A’s can combine Crisp and Davis at the top of the rotation (as envisioned during spring training), the team could potentially see more scoring situations. And let’s face it, if the A’s are to make it to the post-season, the offense is going to have to step it up in the second-half.

Tags: A's A's Hitting A's Lineup A's Offense A's Rotation A's Starting Pitching A's Starting Rotation Adam Rosales AL AL West All Star Game 2010 All Stars All-Star 2010 Andrew Bailey Baseball Ben Sheets Coco Crisp Dallas Braden Daric Barton Gio Gonzalez Hitting Kurt Suzuki MLB All-Star Game 2010 Oakland Oakland A's Oakland Athletics Pitching Promotions Rajai Davis Rotation Ryan Sweeney Throwing Trevor Cahill Vin Mazzaro

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