Series: Game 2 of 3

Oakland leads 2-0 (as of 8/5)

Game 1: Monday, August 4
Tampa Bay2Final
in 10
Game 2: Tuesday, August 5
Tampa Bay0Final
Game 3: Wednesday, August 6
Tampa Bay7Final

Rays 0

(54-59, 27-27 away)

Athletics 3

(69-43, 37-19 home)

    10:05 PM ET, August 5, 2014 Coliseum, Oakland, California 

    123456789 R H E
    TB 000000000 0 7 3
    OAK 00001200 - 3 10 0

    W: J. Hammel (1-4)

    L: D. Smyly (6-10)

    S: S. Doolittle (17)

    Rays-Athletics Preview


    Despite a rough beginning to his tenure in Oakland, Jason Hammel remains a part of the Athletics' starting rotation.

    The right-hander tries to avoid a fifth loss in as many starts with his new team Tuesday night against the visiting Tampa Bay Rays.

    Hammel (0-4, 9.53 ERA) went 8-5 with a 2.98 ERA in 17 starts for the Chicago Cubs before they traded him and Jeff Samardzija to Oakland (68-43) for four minor leaguers July 4. Since then, Hammel has allowed 20 runs, 26 hits and walked 10 with 12 strikeouts over 17 innings.

    He gave up eight runs in 4 1/3 innings of an 8-1 loss at Houston on Wednesday.

    "There's not much to explain," Hammel said. "I'm a completely different pitcher. Just keep making the same mistakes over and over. Right now it doesn't look too good but it's a long season and I've been through this before."

    With last week's addition of Jon Lester to an already stellar rotation that includes Samardzija, fellow All-Star Scott Kazmir and youngster Sonny Gray, whom both own 12-4 records, the A's opted to move eight-game winner Jesse Chavez to the bullpen and give Hammel a chance to work things out as a starter.

    "(Hammel's) track record would suggest we need to be a little bit more patient with him, and I think good things are going to come from him," manager Bob Melvin said. "You don't have a (2.98 ERA) and not give a guy a chance to prove himself here."

    Pitching for Baltimore the past two seasons, Hammel went 1-2 with a 5.19 ERA in five starts against Tampa Bay (54-58).

    After dropping four of six, Oakland won 3-2 in 10 innings on Monday. Derek Norris drove home the winning run with a two-out single off former Athletic closer Grant Balfour to help the major league-leading A's maintain their one-game lead over the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West.

    The defeat snapped the Rays' eight-game winning streak on the road, where they are 16-4 since losing 10 in a row.

    A loser in four of five since an 11-1 stretch, Tampa Bay has totaled seven runs while dropping three one-run contests during a four-game slide at Oakland.

    Part of the three-team trade that sent ace David Price to Detroit last week, Drew Smyly (6-9, 3.93) makes his Tampa Bay debut Tuesday.

    "You're not going to replace David Price," Smyly said. "The Rays made the trade, they wanted me, so I'm going to do the best I can and try to learn from them and get better every game. I'm just doing me."

    The left-hander allowed four runs and 11 hits over five innings while not getting a decision in the Tigers' 7-4 win Thursday over the Chicago White Sox on the same day he was traded.

    Smyly was roughed up for six runs and four solo homers in five innings of a 10-0 loss at Oakland on May 26.

    Brandon Moss and Josh Donaldson each homered off Smyly in that contest.

    Moss, however, is 2 for 28 with 10 strikeouts in his last seven games. Donaldson is 1 for 11 in the last three.

    Tampa Bay's Ben Zobrist hit .486 during a nine-game hitting streak that ended with an 0-for-4 night Monday.

    He's 6 for 12 with a homer and two doubles versus Hammel.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Gameday Matchup

     Tampa BayOakland
    Current StreakL1W1
    Last 103-75-5

    Pitching Matchup

    Tampa BayOakland
    D. Smyly
    9-10, 3.24 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/6 vs BAL
    6.0 IP, 1 ER
    Dec = ND
    J. Hammel
    10-11, 3.47 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/25 at TEX
    6.0 IP, 1 ER
    Dec = ND

    Gameday Lineups

    NO.Tampa BayOakland
    1. D. Jennings, CF C. Crisp, DH
    2. B. Zobrist, LF S. Fuld, CF
    3. M. Joyce, DH J. Donaldson, 3B
    4. E. Longoria, 3B J. Gomes, LF
    5. J. Loney, 1B D. Norris, C
    6. Y. Escobar, SS N. Freiman, 1B
    7. C. Figueroa, 2B J. Reddick, RF
    8. C. Casali, C A. Callaspo, 2B
    9. K. Kiermaier, RF E. Sogard, SS

    Research Notes

    Evan Longoria has hit .372 in at-bats to end in a curveball this season, the ninth-best mark among qualifiers and over 125 points higher than his average against all other pitches. Sonny Gray has thrown a curveball on 27.5 percent of pitches, the third-highest rate in the league.
    Since joining the Athletics on July 4, Jason Hammel has allowed a .423 ISO in at-bats ending with his fastball, which is 274 points above the league average. Over that same span, the Tampa Bay Rays have an ISO of .122 in at-bats ending with a fastball, which is the fourth-lowest rate in MLB.

    ESPN Stats & Information