Baseball Press presents "The 606", a look at the most intriguing pitching matchup of the day, with a final prediction of the winning pitcher. You may be asking yourself "What exactly does The 606 mean? There's no major league baseball for that area code- it's in Eastern Kentucky!" BBP isn't listing players from Eastern Kentucky either. The 606 is short for 60 feet and 6 inches. If you still don't understand, I direct your attention to Official Rule 1.07 from Major League Baseball, referring to the distance from the pitching mound to home plate. Now that we've got that squared away, let's take a look at today's featured pitching matchup for Saturday, September 4th.
Yesterday, Bronson Arroyo
turned in a quality start against the Cardinals, but was defeated in a close 3-2 loss in St. Louis.
Loss: Bronson Arroyo (6 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 1.00 WHIP)
The 606 Season-to-Date Record (W-L-ND): 102-88-63, 3.72 ERA (654 ER in 1582 IP)
In today's 606, it's an AL West division rivalry as the Angels and A's send their aces to the hill in a great pitching matchup.
RHP Jered Weaver - LAA (11-10 3.12 ERA) vs. RHP Trevor Cahill - OAK (14-6, 2.82 ERA)
It's been a disappointing season for the Angels, but one thing they can look back on positively is the performance of staff ace Jered Weaver, who has cemented himself as one of the league's best arms. Despite an 11-10 record, Weaver's 200 strikeouts is tied for tops in baseball, and he reached that level in just 182 innings of work. His 3.12 ERA would blow away his full season career best of 3.75 (accomplished last year), as would his 1.10 WHIP. The 27 year-old Northridge, California native and former first round selection has had problems against the Athletics this season, though, posting a 6.00 ERA and an 0-2 record in 3 starts (18 innings). However, he is coming off of an excellent month of August, which saw him go 2-3 but log 45 strikeouts and a 2.85 ERA and 1.12 WHIP in 41 innings. The Angels are looking to finish well this season and their core of talented players appears very strong, so a fine finish from Weaver in the final month of this "year of the pitcher" season could provide some momentum and a solid foundation leading into 2011. A win over division rival Oakland would certainly help contribute to that.
This season has been full of surprising pitching, but one of the most surprising performances is that of 22 year-old Oakland pitcher Trevor Cahill, who has emerged as one of the American League's top young arms in 2010. Unlike his opponent on Saturday, Cahill is anything but a strikeout pitcher, but that hasn't kept him from posting a sub-3.00 ERA into September and one of the leagues best WHIP numbers at 1.05. A rough outing against the powerful Yankee lineup in his latest start pushed his season ERA from 2.43 to 2.82, but Cahill still looks poised to finish the year with an excellent win-loss mark and, understandably, the attention of teams around the league. While not in serious playoff contention, the Oakland A's have performed well this season with what many perceived to be a shallow base of talent. Finding a sure-fire ace is one of the first steps to playoff-caliber baseball, and with Cahill this year, it looks like Oakland has accomplished that. Cahill has been lights-out dominant in 3 starts versus the Angels this season, going 2-1 with a 1.64 ERA and 0.86 WHIP in 22 innings. He'll look to continue that success this weekend.
Final Prediction: Trevor Cahill