Detroit Tigers vs. Oakland A’s Preview and Pick – Kenny Rogers vs. Rich Harden

Detroit Tigers (24-32) +140, 8 at Oakland A’s (30-27), 10 pm Eastern Monday
by Zman of

One of the big disappointments of this early season goes up against one of the pleasant surprises when the Detroit Tigers and Oakland A’s kick off a three-game series at McAfee Coliseum Monday night.

Online Sportsbooks are listing Oakland and starting pitcher Rich Harden as 155 home favorites for Monday’s game, with a total of 8, while Detroit and Kenny Rogers are getting +140 as road underdogs.

Detroit is 3-3 on a current nine-game road trip after winning in Seattle Sunday 7-5, rallying for four runs in the ninth inning. So going into this week’s action, the Tigers are still mired in fourth place in the AL Central, six games behind the division-leading Chicago White Sox.

The A’s broke a four-game losing streak with a 13-8 win over Texas Sunday. So heading into Monday’s game, Oakland is in second place in the AL West, 3 1/2 games behind the division-leading Los Angeles Angels.

This series is the first meeting between these two teams this season. Last year, Oakland took the season series from Detroit six games to four, with the totals going 4-6, despite the games averaging 11.2 total runs per.

The Tigers are 12-18 on the road this season, 9-14 as underdogs, and 28-28 vs. the run line.

The A’s are 17-13 at home this year, 13-12 as favorites, and 33-24 vs. the run line.

Rogers (4-4, 5.88), over his last three starts, including his best outing of the year last Monday vs. the Los Angeles Angels, has given up 11 ER and 31 BR in 16 1/3 IP. Detroit is 5-6 in Rogers’ starts this year, the totals 7-3.

Rogers hasn’t started a game vs. Oakland since 2006.

Harden (3-0, 2.60), over his last three starts, including a solid outing vs. Toronto last Wednesday, has allowed four ER and 17 BR in 20 IP. Oakland is 4-2 in Harden’s starts this year, the totals 3-3.

Harden hasn’t started a game vs. Detroit since 2006.

Detroit ranks 9th in the majors in team batting at .264, 11th in team OBP at .334, 9th in team slugging at .419, and is averaging 4.8 runs per game. But the Tigers have been shut out nine times already this year, the most of any team in the majors.

Oakland ranks 23rd in batting at .252, 15th in OBP at .330, 26th in slugging at .375, and is averaging 4.5 RPG.

The Detroit bullpen has given up four ER and 16 BR over its last five games, covering 8 1/3 innings of work.

The Oakland pen has given up 10 ER and 24 BR in its last five games, covering 14 2/3 IP.

The totals are 25-27 in Tigers games this year, 22-31 in A’s games, and 12-16 in games played at McAfee Coliseum.

Zman’s Pick: Rich Harden is a stud, but how can we go against Kenny Rogers who has a 25-4 lifetime record at McAfee Coliseum. Can the old boy muster up another “W” to add to his phenomenal record in Oaktown? We’re calling this one a live dog and are excited to be holding a +140 ticket!