Last night the Athletics snapped a 15-game road losing streak as Jace Peterson homered twice in the victory. It seemed like the Athletics were well on their way to joining the 2021 Orioles and Diamondbacks for 20+ game road losing streaks until a wonderful performance last night. The Pirates had taken the early lead on a Jack Suwinski fielders choice and an error, as it seemed like the A's were heading to another loss. Shea Langeliers answered in the top of the second though with a bomb to center field to tie the game. The sixth inning is when things broke open though. Tied at two going into the top of the sixth, the Athletics scored three runs on four hits and an error to give them a 5-2 lead. Peterson would hit home runs in the eighth and ninth innings to give the Athletics the win. Now the rubber match of the three-game series is on tap for this afternoon.
Here are the Athletics-Pirates MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
MLB Odds: Ahtletics-Pirates Odds
Oakland Athletics: +1.5 (-134)
Pittsburgh Pirates: -1.5 (+112)
Over: 9 (-105)
Under: 9 (-115)
How To Watch Athletics vs. Pirates
Time: 12:35 PM ET/ 8:35 AM PT
*Watch MLB games LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why The Athletics Could Cover The Spread
The offense has shown some signs of life at times this year, but possibly none more than against the Pirates ace last night. It was just the fourth time all year that the Athletics scored ten or more runs. Brent Rooker was a major part of that. He drove in two last night on a home run. It was his first RBI since May 22nd and his first home run since May 12th. He has been hitting the ball better as of late. He has hits in four of his last five games overall.
Jace Peterson had five hits last night, which hopefully should continue his turnaround. Going into the month he was hitting just .192, but he has brought that up to .218 in the last four games. He had just 14 hits and nine RBIs in all of May. In four games this month, he already has seven hits and five RBIs. Ryan Noda is having one of the best weeks of his season as well. He is hitting .350 in the last week, with two doubles and three runs scored. Considering Noda hit just .224 in May, his .389 batting average this month is quite an improvement.
The A's are sending Hogan Harris for his first start of the year. He may be used as an opener, but he has shown this year, he can work long innings. In his last two outings, he went five innings in each of them. In the first one, he gave up no runs and just one hit in five innings. The next time out it was five hits and two runs over five innings.
Why The Pirates Could Cover The Spread
Like has happened far too often this year, the Pirates' bats went silent last night. Against a pitcher that had been struggling, the Pirates managed just four hits against Kaprielian to help him get his first win of the year. The issue last night was hitting with runners in scoring position. They went 0-13 last night with runners in scoring position, led by Suwinski who went 0-3. Suwinski has not normally been bad in those situations. In the year he is hitting .273 with runners in scoring position, but last night he failed to deliver.
One solution to the problem from last night may be moving Bryan Reynolds down to give him more opportunities with runners in the scoring position. On the year he is hitting .362 in RISP situations with an OBP of .417. He has 31 RBIs when runners are in scoring position, which leads the team. Reynolds's bat has cooled off a little in June, hitting just .235 this month. Regardless, he is top 30 in the majors in RBIs this year, and the Pirates need to put him in positions to drive in runs.
The Pirates send Roansy Contreras to the mound in this one. He is 3-4 with a 4.82 ERA on the season. To start the year, Contreras was pitching well. He let up two or fewer runs in four of his first five starts while going 5.2 innings or more in those starts. Since then, he has started just one game in which he went over 5.2 innings and gave up two or fewer runs. His last time out he gave up five runs in just four innings of work.
Final Athletics-Pirates Prediction & Pick
The Athletics have won just two series all year long, and it was also the only two times this year the Athletics have won back-to-back games. The first was at Kansas City at the start of May. That should not mean much since the Royals are nearly as bad as the Athletics. The second time was fairly recent. The Athletics took games one and two over the Braves on May 29th and 30th. Still, the Athletics have struggled on the road and struggled to put together back-to-back solid offensive performances. The most runs they have put together in back-to-back nights combined is 17. They did that in the two wins over Kansas City. The Athletics are not scoring six runs tonight, and will not be getting the win in this one.
Final Athletics-Pirates Prediction & Pick: Pirates -1.5 (+112)