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News » Athletics-Blue Jays Preview 2009-04-18

Athletics-Blue Jays Preview 2009-04-18

Athletics-Blue Jays Preview 2009-04-18
Starting off strong on the road is nothing new for the Oakland Athletics.

After rallying for their most recent win away from home, the A's look for a fourth consecutive road victory when they continue a three-game series with the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.

Oakland (5-5) opened the season on the road with a loss to the Los Angeles Angels, but won the next two in Anaheim before it concluded a 2-4 homestand by taking two of three from Boston.

On Friday, Bobby Crosby had a bases-loaded triple and Matt Holliday drove in two - including the go-ahead run - as the A's rallied from a four-run deficit and won 8-5 over Toronto (8-4) to snap a six-game losing streak against the Blue Jays.

For the third time in four seasons the A's are playing well early on the road. They also started 3-1 in 2006, and 5-0 last season before finishing 32-48 away from home.

Crosby's hit highlighted a four-run fourth for Oakland, which has won three of its last four, and has scored 20 runs in its last three road games. It was just the second hit in 13 at-bats for Crosby, who lost his starting shortstop job to Orlando Cabrera.

"I want to be a starting shortstop and I still feel that at some point I will be," said Crosby, who is 7-for-17 with eight RBIs in his last five games against Toronto. "But, for the time being, this is what I've got to do to help the team win so that's what I'm doing."

Holliday is batting .318 (7-for-22) during his five-game hitting streak for the A's, who hope for another strong outing from rookie Trevor Cahill.

Cahill (0-1, 2.25 ERA) took a no-hitter into the seventh before allowing a run and two hits in seven innings of a 1-0 loss to Seattle on Sunday in his second career start.

"I heard a lot about Trevor Cahill, that he was a poor man's Brandon Webb," former Athletic and current Mariner Mike Sweeney said. "He came out and pitched liked it. He knows what he's doing out there."

The 21-year-old right-hander likely won't have an easy time against the high-powered Toronto offense that leads the majors with 82 runs and a .307 batting average.

Five Oakland pitchers, though, held the Blue Jays scoreless over the final six innings Friday.

Marco Scutaro and Aaron Hill each hit their fourth homers for Toronto, which had won two in a row to conclude a 5-2 road trip.

Hill is batting .389 and is 9-for-14 with two home runs and six RBIs in his last three games for the Blue Jays, who had six hits after recording 30 in their last two contests.

With Jesse Litsch on the 15-day disabled list with a sore elbow, reliever Brian Tallett (0-0, 6.14) was moved into the rotation for Saturday.

After allowing five runs in four relief appearances, Tallet makes his first start for the Blue Jays since 2006.

"It's a new opportunity," Tallet told the Blue Jays' official Web site. "It's just a new way that I can possibly help the team win ballgames."

The left-hander is 1-2 with a 2.70 ERA in six career starts and will make his first against Oakland.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: April 18, 2009

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