What to watch for: A's extra motivated against the Tigers?

What to watch for: A's extra motivated against the Tigers?
April 12, 2013, 2:45 pm
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Justin Verlander threw a shutout at the Oakland Coliseum that sealed the A's postseason fate. (USA TODAY IMAGES)

OAKLAND -- The Oakland Athletics return home after a perfect 6-0 road trip through Houston and Anaheim and they have won eight games in a row. It's safe to say they are on a roll. The A's lead all of Major League Baseball in runs, hits, doubles, home runs and RBI. They also have an American League-leading 2.90 ERA.

Ready for Revenge?

The Detroit Tigers eliminated the A's in Game Five of the American League Division Series last season. After the A's battled back from an 0-2 deficit in the best of five series, Justin Verlander threw a shutout at the Oakland Coliseum that sealed their fate. Verlander will take the mound on Saturday, it will be interesting to see if they can find a way to put some runs on the board against him. Detroit is sending their three best pitchers, Max Scherzer, Anibal Sanchez and Verlander to the mound in this three-game series.

"We get the same three guys that we saw in the playoffs," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "They are a great team and we saw it last year and we struggled with them last year. We better play well if we expect to win some games against them too."

The A's might be playing with a little more emotion than in a regular April series.

"I think the guys who were here last year a little bit more want to play those guys," Josh Donaldson said. "We'll get some payback, hopefully."

[RELATED: A's lineup: Reddick Returns]

Stay Golden

A's right fielder Josh Reddick will return to the lineup in time for the series against the Tigers. He sprained his right wrist on Sunday in Houston in what looked like a serious collision. Even without one of their best players, the A's won all three of the games he missed. Reddick's defense was missed at times in the series against the Angels. The fans in attendance at the Oakland Coliseum will get a reminder of how much Reddick's defense means on Friday, when he is presented with his Rawling's Gold Glove award on the field before the game in a ceremony.

Hot Coco

A's leadoff hitter Coco Crisp is off to a hot start. Crisp is working on an eight-game hitting streak. He has scored a run or more in each of the past eight games and leads Major League Baseball with 14 runs scored. You can't ask for much more than that out of your leadoff hitter. Crisp, by the way, has a .364 (8 for 22) career average against Verlander.

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