Matt Olson is displaying that the Oakland Athletics have a powerful first baseman in the fold for next season. The rookie enters Tuesday’s road game against the Detroit Tigers with homers in four consecutive games and 11 in September after going deep in Monday’s 8-3 victory in the opener of the three-game set.
Olson is the first Oakland player to homer in four consecutive games since Coco Crisp in 2013 and has slugged 14 blasts in his past 20 games. “You can’t expect something like this to happen,” Olson told reporters. “I know I’m capable of it. Just kind of sit back and be in the moment and approach it the same way as the day before.” Olson’s hot stretch has helped the Athletics win nine of their past 12 contests while the Tigers have lost eight of their last 10 and are just 4-14 in September. Third baseman Nicholas Castellanos is playing well and had three hits in the opener and is 25-for-58 with four homers and 16 RBIs during a career-long 15-game hitting streak.
TV: 7:10 p.m. ET, NBCSN Bay Area (Oakland), FSN Detroit
PITCHING MATCHUP: Athletics RH Daniel Gossett (4-9, 5.02 ERA) vs. Tigers LH Chad Bell (0-3, 6.42)
Gossett lost to the Boston Red Sox in his last turn when he gave up three runs and five hits in 5 1/3 innings. The 24-year-old rookie has dropped three of his last four decisions, with the win during the span occurring when he held the Houston Astros to one run and five hits over six innings. Gossett is the third pitcher in Oakland franchise history to lose at least nine games in his first 15 major-league appearances.
Bell is making his fourth big-league start since recently being moved into the rotation. He was hammered for six runs and nine hits over 3 1/3 innings while losing to the Chicago White Sox in his last turn. The 28-year-old Bell is 0-2 with a 7.31 ERA in 11 appearances (two starts) this season.
1. Tigers 1B Miguel Cabrera (back) was hitless in five at-bats on Monday after missing the previous game.
2. 2B Jed Lowrie notched his 46th double of the season, one off the most hit during the franchise’s Oakland tenure (Jason Giambi had 47 in 2001).
3. Detroit RHP Jeff Ferrell left Monday’s game and was taken to a hospital after being struck in the head by a liner off the bat of Athletics DH Ryon Healy.
PREDICTION: Athletics 8, Tigers 5