Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Rays, Athletics lineups for AL Wild Card game

Leave a comment

The American League side of the playoff bracket will begin with the AL Wild Card game tonight at 8 PM ET on ESPN, featuring the Rays and Athletics in Oakland. The Rays went 96-66 during the regular season, finishing a distant seven games behind the Yankees. The A’s went 97-65, finishing an even more distant 10 games behind the Astros.

Here are your starting lineups.


1B Yandy Díaz – .267/.340/.476, 14 HR, 38 RBI (347 PA)
DH Tommy Pham – .273/.369/.450, 21 HR, 68 RBI (654 PA)
LF Austin Meadows – .291/.364/.558, 33 HR, 89 RBI (591 PA)
C Travis d'Arnaud – .263/.323/.459, 16 HR, 67 RBI (365 PA)
3B Matt Duffy – .252/.343/.327, 1 HR, 12 RBI (169 PA)
RF Avisaíl García – .282/.332/.464, 20 HR, 72 RBI (530 PA)
SS Willy Adames – .254/.317/.418, 20 HR, 52 RBI (584 PA)
CF Kevin Kiermaier – .228/.278/.398, 14 HR, 55 RBI (480 PA)
2B Michael Brosseau – .273/.319/.462, 6 HR, 16 RBI (142 PA)

SP Charlie Morton – 16-6, 3.05 ERA< 240 K, 57 BB (194 2/3 IP)

The Rays are back in the playoffs for the first time since 2013. Hard to believe it’s been that long, but the club had strung together five consecutive seasons of finishing in third place or worse.

Morton had a career year and is a solid No. 3 in the AL Cy Young Award race behind the Astros’ Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander. The Rays received a lot of press for popularizing “the opener” plus reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell had a down year, so Morton stepped up as the de facto ace of the staff.


SS Marcus Semien – .285/.369/.522, 33 HR, 92 RBI (747 PA)
RF Ramón Laureano – .288/.340/.521, 24 HR, 67 RBI (481 PA)
3B Matt Chapman – .249/.342/.506, 36 HR, 91 RBI (670 PA)
1B Matt Olson – .267/.351/.545, 36 HR, 91 RBI (547 PA)
CF Mark Canha – .273/.396/.517, 26 HR, 58 RBI (497 PA)
2B Jurickson Profar – .218/.301/.410, 20 HR, 67 RBI (518 PA)
DH Khris Davis – .220/.293/.387, 23 HR, 73 RBI (533 PA)
LF Robbie Grossman – .240/.334/.348, 6 HR, 38 RBI (482 PA)
C Sean Murphy – .245/.333/.566, 4 HR, 8 RBI (60 PA)

SP Sean Manaea – 4-0, 1.21 ERA, 30 K, 7 BB (29 2/3 IP)

The A’s are appearing in the AL Wild Card game for a second consecutive year. They lost last year to the Yankees, 7-2. Should they win tonight, the A’s will advance into the ALDS for the first time since 2013.

Manaea underwent shoulder surgery in September 2018 and didn’t return until rosters expanded last month. In five September starts, Manaea dazzled with a 1.21 ERA and a 30/7 K/BB ratio across 29 2/3 innings. Although it is a small sample size, the performance isn’t hard to buy into as Manaea has shown that kind of potential before, particularly when he no-hit the eventual world champion Red Sox on April 21, 2018.

MLBPA: MLB’s ‘demand for additional concessions was resoundingly rejected’

Rob Manfred and Tony Clark
LG Patterson/MLB via Getty Images

On Thursday evening, the Major League Baseball Players Association released a statement regarding ongoing negotiations between the owners and the union. The two sides continue to hash out details concerning a 2020 season. The owners want a shorter season, around 50 games. The union recently proposed a 114-game season that also offered the possibility of salary deferrals.

MLBPA executive director Tony Clark said that the union held a conference call that included the Executive Board and MLBPA player leaders. They “resoundingly rejected” the league’s “demand for additional concessions.”

The full statement:

In this time of unprecedented suffering at home and abroad, Players want nothing more than to get back to work and provide baseball fans with the game we all love. But we cannot do this alone.

Earlier this week, Major League Baseball communicated its intention to schedule a dramatically shortened 2020 season unless Players negotiate salary concessions. The concessions being sought are in addition to billions in Player salary reductions that have already been agreed upon.

This threat came in response to an Association proposal aimed at charting a path forward. Among other things, Players proposed more games, two years of expanded playoffs, salary deferrals in the event of a 2020 playoff cancellation, and the exploration of additional jewel events and broadcast enhancements aimed at creatively bringing our Players to the fans while simultaneously increasing the value of our product. Rather than engage, the league replied it will shorten the season unless Players agree to further salary reductions.

Earlier today we held a conference call of the Association’s Executive Board and several other MLBPA Player leaders. The overwhelming consensus of the Board is that Players are ready to report, ready to get back on the field, and they are willing to do so under unprecedented conditions that could affect the health and safety of not just themselves, but their families as well. The league’s demand for additional concessions was resoundingly rejected.

Important work remains to be done in order to safely resume the season. We stand ready to complete that work and look forward to getting back on the field.

As per the current agreement signed in March, if there is a 2020 season, players will be paid on a prorated basis. Thus, fewer games means the players get paid less and the owners save more. MLB has threatened to unilaterally set a 2020 season in motion if the two sides cannot come to terms. It should come as no surprise that the union has responded strongly on both fronts.

There have been varying reports in recent days over the confidence in a 2020 season happening. The MLBPA’s statement tonight doesn’t move the needle any; it simply affirms that the union remains steadfast in its goal to avoid a second significant cut in salaries.

As I see it, the ball is in the owners’ court. The owners can strongarm the players into a short season, saving money but significantly increasing the odds of a big fight in upcoming collective bargaining agreement negotiations. Or the owners can eat more of a financial loss, agreeing to a longer season than they feel is comfortable. The latter would have the double benefit of not damaging overall perception of the sport and would not disrupt labor peace going forward.

The MLBPA statement included a declaration that the players are “ready to report, ready to get back on the field, and they are willing to do so under unprecedented conditions.” If there is no 2020 season, we will have only the owners to blame, not the players.

Update: Cardinals pitcher Jack Flaherty, who has been quite vocal on social media about these negotiations, chimed in: