Lately, the Oakland Athletics have had trouble at the back end of the rotation. Today it seems those troubles may a thing of the past.
Today, Dan Straily was sent down to Triple-A, and Drew Pomeranz is now officially in the rotation taking his place. Pomeranz threw 5 shutout innings against the Mariners this week, where he had a 70 pitch limit. He threw 68 total. With more pitches to throw in future games, Pomeranz will be able to last even more innings while shutting out teams. The Dan Straily issue is resolved, he is in Sacramento working on his fastball command.
Tommy Milone was the other issue, but it seems he is on his way to redemption.
Today Tommy Milone went 8 shutout innings against the Washington Nationals. He threw 108 pitches to finish the day, and he lowered his ERA by nearly an entire run.
With Pomeranz pitching instead of Straily, and Milone showing his 2012 self, the back end seems to have solidified overnight.
This game may just be exactly what the Athletics needed to bounce back from a really bad slump in which they started the month 2-5. The Offense showed signs of life again, with 3 homeruns coming from John Jaso, Brandon Moss, and Yoenis Cespedes. Everyone in the lineup got a hit with the exceptions of Jed Lowrie and Craig Gentry, although Gentry did get walked.
With the offense coming back to life, and the back end of the rotation improving drastically overnight, The Athletics seem to be in a position to have another strong month, and lock up yet another month with a winning record. They also seem to have better chances of staying in first place and defending their AL West title.
This team may have had to go through way too many hurdles early on, but the team seems to be doing just fine, just like they always do.