Author: Matt Fargo - Sunday, June 01, 2008
Matt Fargo's Diamond Preview - A look at the upcoming week in baseball
Monday, June 2nd
Arizona Diamondbacks at Milwaukee Brewers 8:05 PM ET
Doug Davis makes his first trip back to Milwaukee this season to face his former club. This will be his third start since returning from cancer surgery and he will no doubt get a rousing welcome from Brewers fans. Davis was shelled last time out against the Giants and was hit hard in his last game in Milwaukee last season. Jeff Suppan counters for the Brewers and brings in a 0.93 ERA in four home starts. He has a 2.19 ERA in his last four encounters with the Diamondbacks.
Tuesday, June 3rd
New York Mets at San Francisco Giants 10:15 PM ET
Pedro Martinez is slated to return from a strained left hamstring to make his second start of the season. The Mets staff has struggled this season for the most part so a healthy and effective Martinez is vital for the remainder of the season. He goes against Barry Zito who was everyone's punching bag for a while but has shown improvement. Since returning to the rotation following a stint in the bullpen where he saw no action, Zito has posted a 3.49 ERA in five starts and finally got that elusive first victory two starts back.
Wednesday, June 4th
Detroit Tigers at Oakland A's 3:35 PM ET
The Tigers ends their rugged nine-game west coast trip with a matinee in Oakland. Following a day off on Thursday, Detroit will play seven straight division games against the Indians and White Sox and even though the season is still young, that stretch could decide whether the Tigers remain in the race or not. In this game, they face off against Justin Duchscherer who is flying under the radar with a 2.27 ERA and 1.01 WHIP in eight starts. He is 3-0 with a 1.35 ERA and 0.65 WHIP in three home starts.
Thursday, June 5th
Tampa Bay Rays at Boston Red Sox 7:05 PM ET
It is moving day for many teams on Thursday and the Rays and Red Sox conclude their three-game set. Tampa Bay has been the surprise of baseball as they entered this week in first place in the American League East. The Rays sport the second best record in baseball but they will be trying to improve upon that in Boston where the Red Sox own the best home record in baseball. Scott Kazmir, who has allowed only two earned runs in his last five starts, gets the call here and has a solid 2.82 ERA in 18 starts against Boston.
Friday, June 6th
Philadelphia Phillies at Atlanta Braves 7:35 PM ET
The Phillies and Braves commence their second series of the season in Atlanta. The Braves are the Jekyll and Hyde in baseball in home and road games as the host is 42-14 in their 56 games entering this week. Tim Hudson missed Philadelphia the first time around but he gets the Phillies in the opener. In 13 starts against the Phillies, he is 4-5 with a 4.02 ERA and 1.46 WHIP. The wins are the fewest against all division teams and the ERA and WHIP are the highest against all division opponents.
Saturday, June 7th
Los Angeles Angels at Oakland A's 9:05 PM ET
One of the best pitching matchups of the week takes place Saturday with Ervin Santana squaring off against Rich Harden. Santana, with seven victories heading into the week, has already matched his win total from all of last year. He has been strong on the road this year and is 3-0 with a 1.57 ERA in four career starts in Oakland. Harden meanwhile has allowed two runs or fewer in five of his six starts this season and in three starts at McAfee Coliseum, he has posted a 1.50 ERA and 1.11 WHIP.
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