Yankees-Athletics Preview

Jesse Chavez's pitching line is beginning to look like a typo was made either in his record or ERA because the two numbers he's posted aren't often seen in the same row.

Look over to the run-support column and things become clear.

Chavez is getting not only the worst run support in the majors, but his mark as a starter hasn't been seen in a decade. The Oakland Athletics will try to change that for him Sunday as they seek a series win against the visiting New York Yankees.

As the losses continued pilling up for Chavez (1-5, 2.44 ERA) with his third in four starts in falling 1-0 at home to Detroit on Tuesday, the right-hander had possibly the best outing of his career by limiting the Tigers to an unearned run and five hits in eight innings.

His 1.05 run-support average is the lowest in the majors with No. 2 Jake Odorizzi's 2.17 mark more than doubling it. As a starter, Chavez has a 1.20 RSA in 45 innings, the lowest as a starter in that many innings since Zack Greinke's 0.77 in 46 2-3 innings in 2005.

"His win-loss isn't even close to indicative to how well he's pitched," manager Bob Melvin told MLB's official website. "He can't knock in runs. All he can do is pitch and keep the other team down, and he did that."

It hasn't been a problem against the Yankees with a 3-0 record, 2.29 ERA and 7.32 RSA in two starts and two relief outings. He's earned victories in the last three appearances, including two starts last season. Brian McCann is 0 for 7 with four strikeouts against him.

The Yankees (26-24) won the third game of the series 5-3 on Saturday to end a five-game road skid. Still, they've dropped nine of 11 away overall and 11 of 13 in Oakland (19-33).

Carlos Beltran homered and Chase Headley was 3 for 5, giving the third baseman a .370 average in seven games. All of Beltran's four home runs have come in the last 16 games, and he's batting .308 in 24 games this month after hitting .162 in April.

"I'm just getting better results," Beltran said. "Sometimes I have been too passive at the plate, so my mentality is to hit. If I'm too patient, it puts me in a hole."

Alex Rodriguez has a nine-game hitting streak and is making his third attempt to pass Barry Bonds for second on the all-time RBI list. The embattled sluggers are tied with 1,996.

For Oakland, Billy Burns had two hits for a third straight game, and Josh Reddick broke from an 0-for-10 skid by going 3 for 4.

They'll face Adam Warren, who has secured his spot in the New York rotation despite the impending return of Masahiro Tanaka. Warren (3-3, 3.91) held Kansas City to a run and two hits in 6 1-3 innings of Tuesday's 5-1 win. He lost his previous two starts, but is 1-2 with a 2.96 ERA in his last four and in position to win consecutive starts - or appearances of any kind - for the first time in his career.

"He's pitching as well as anyone in our rotation right now," manager Joe Girardi said. "The young man's getting the job done for us."

Against Oakland, Warren is 0-1 with 2.19 ERA in five relief efforts.

A's reliever Sean Doolittle (left shoulder) returned to the disabled list three days after making his season debut.

New York outfielder Slade Heathcott (right quad strain) landed on the DL 10 days after making his major league debut.


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