The Oakland Athletics were forced to rearrange their rotation for their game in Detroit on Thursday.
Sean Manaea was originally scheduled to pitch the series finale for Oakland (73-60), but Frankie Montas will start instead due to visa issues. The A’s, who play a weekend series in Toronto, couldn’t secure Montas an expedited visa into Canada.
The Tigers (63-71) probably wish Montas had been able to get across the border, as Manaea had a 9.90 ERA in August. Meanwhile, Montas has been lights out in his last two outings, tossing 14 scoreless innings against San Francisco and the New York Yankees. He only allowed two hits in each seven-inning start while recording a combined 15 strikeouts.
The victory over the Yankees halted their 13-game winning streak.
“Against that lineup, with a win streak going and the way they’re swinging the bats, I don’t know how you can pitch any better than that,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said. “It looked like he had an edge from the very beginning. Had all three of his pitches working. A much-needed outing for us. Fantastic.”
Montas held the Tigers scoreless on only two hits in six innings on April 16.
Detroit right-hander Matt Manning (3-5, 5.46 ERA) will oppose Manaea. The rookie was sharp in his last outing on Friday, as he held Toronto to one run and struck out a career-high five in six innings.
“He was impressive and had a very mature outing against a very good offensive club — an aggressive team, a young team that comes out swinging for damage,” manager A.J. Hinch said.
Manning will be facing the A’s for the first time.
Hinch plans to give Miguel Cabrera the day off on Thursday. Cabrera hit a two-run homer, the 502nd long ball of his career, and drove in three runs in Detroit’s 8-6 win over the A’s on Wednesday.
The Tigers had lost four straight overall and also snapped a 12-game home losing streak to Oakland.
“I don’t talk a lot about character wins, but this an example of a lot of things working for us,” Hinch said after his team rallied from a three-run deficit.
Outfielder Akil Baddoo broke out of a slump with a homer, RBI single and walk. Baddoo hadn’t homered since July 27 or drawn a walk since July 29.
“I kind of got a little too aggressive,” Baddoo said. “(Tonight) I just kind of let my abilities take over.”
The A’s brought back a familiar face on Wednesday and he could see action on Thursday. Designated hitter Khris Davis had his contract selected from Triple-A Las Vegas.
Davis hit 158 homers for the A’s from 2016-20. He was traded to Texas in the offseason, then released in June. Oakland re-signed him in early August.
“Where he came from and where he is right now can be a hard road,” Melvin said. “To get traded, then get released, there’s a period of time where you’re not sure what’s going to happen and you have to go back to the minor leagues … and then do what he did to get back here, it takes some guts. I think it was just having to dig deep and do some soul searching and fight your way back to the big leagues.”
–Field Level Media