Programming note: Giants-A's coverage begins tonight at 6:30 p.m. with A's Pregame Live on Comcast SportsNet California!
The second leg of the Battle of the Bay series begins Friday at the Coliseum. The Giants took the first series in decisive fashion -- winning two of three. Those games were played in San Francisco. The A's hold the all-time series lead 46-43.Home FieldIn Oakland, the A's will have the home field advantage. The Giants haven't won in the East Bay since June 24, 2009. The A's will be looking for their seventh-straight win over SF on their turf. Advantage: A'sMomentumThe Giants have lost their last two games, and have won four of their last 10. The A's are on a three-game winning streak, having just swept the NL-best Dodgers. They have won eight of their last 10 games. The Giants were off on Thursday, while the A's beat the Dodgers on a day in which reigning NL Cy Young Clayton Kershaw started -- winning the game on a three-run walkoff homer by Yoenis Cespedes. The Giants have rest on their side, but the A's have the momentum. Advantage: A'sOffenseThe East Bay leg of this series brings the designated hitter into play. It is also worth noting that neither team had their top weapons available in the previous series. Pablo Sandoval missed the prior battle while recovering from hand surgery, and Cespedes had a hand injury as well. When these teams last met in SF, Melky Cabrera torched the A's -- going 8 for 11 with a double. The DH also lets the Giants keep Buster Posey in the lineup. The A's didn't have either of their Brandons -- Inge or Moss -- in the last meeting. Moss has clubbed seven home runs since joining the A's. That is more than every Giants first baseman has combined. Advantage: EVENTim Lincecum (2-8, 6.19 ERA) vs. Jarrod Parker (3-3, 2.82 ERA) Lincecum is in a freakish funk right now. He has allowed 14 runs in his last 16 innings pitched. He was also defeated by the A's in their previous meeting. Prior to that start, he had a 1.38 ERA against Oakland, and was 5-1, with three complete games -- two of which were shutouts. Parker is pitching on extra rest and coming off a start at hitter-friendly Coors Field, where he threw seven shutout innings. The young righty has a little extra motivation against the Giants -- who rocked him for six runs and knocked him out in the third inning on May 18. Parker has allowed two runs or less in all but two of his starts. He was pitching with the flu on that day. He'll be looking to prove that outing was a fluke. Advantage: ParkerMadison Bumgarner (8-4, 2.92 ERA) vs. Tyson Ross (2-6, 6.11 ERA) Bumgarner, 22 is becoming one of the games toughest left-handed pitchers. The A's will have their work cut out against him on Saturday. The A's have never faced him before. Coincidentally Bumgarner was born in 1989, the year the A's and Giants met in the World Series. Ross, 25, was three during that World Series. He grew up on 66th Street in Oakland, and is familiar with the A's and Giants rivalry. He has been ping-ponging back and forth between the Major Leagues and Triple-A this season. He faced the Giants in SF on May 19, he lost the game but threw six innings, and allowed two runs. The A's didn't score in that game. Advantage: BumgarnerMatt Cain (9-2, 2.34 ERA) vs. Brandon McCarthy (6-3, 2.54) This match up is the toughest to call. Sure, Cain is undoubtedly one of the best pitchers in the game today -- he did just throw a perfect game after all -- but McCarthy is on fire lately. Cain is coming off an uncharacteristically mediocre start against the Angels, giving up three runs, six hits, and three walks in just five innings. McCarthy is on a career-best six-game win streak. The reason I am giving Cain the edge here is because he is "the horse." The Giants will ride Cain well over 100 pitches, while McCarthy will be on a strict pitch count. He will likely be held to 90 or fewer pitches after experiencing shoulder issues over the last month. Advantage: CainWho has the series advantage? You make the call