With each team pondering rotation changes down the line, the Oakland Athletics and host San Francisco Giants complete a two-game interleague series Wednesday afternoon with a pair of struggling starters on the mound.
Right-handers Homer Bailey (9-8, 5.54 ERA) of the A's and Tyler Beede (3-6, 5.61) of the Giants are scheduled to duel. The home team will hope to ride the momentum of a thrilling finish and 3-2 win in Tuesday's opener to a series sweep.
San Francisco held on for the win, surviving a bases-loaded walk in the top of the ninth. Closer Will Smith subsequently struck out Chad Pinder on a 2-2 pitch to end the game with the bases loaded.
The A's will attempt to bounce back Wednesday against Beede, a guy they've never faced.
The 26-year-old is winless in his past five starts with a 5.93 ERA. He's been roughed up for four or more runs in each of his past four outings.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy admitted before Tuesday's win that the organization has not decided how to line up its starters around Madison Bumgarner and Jeff Samardzija down the stretch as the club chases a National League wild-card spot.
"We're talking about all our options right now," he told reporters. "We'll come up with it soon."
The Giants received good news on two minor league fronts in the past week when Johnny Cueto, coming off Tommy John surgery, made a second pain-free start during a rehab assignment in Class-A and prospect Logan Webb made a strong Triple-A debut.
If all goes well in Cueto's third scheduled start Thursday, he could be an option in the very near future, as could Webb.
The A's will counter with Bailey, one of their two veteran pickups at the trade deadline. He has struggled in his five starts for Oakland, going 2-2 with an 8.17 ERA.
His most recent outing was a 10-1 road loss to the Chicago Cubs on Aug. 7, when he allowed seven runs in 4 2/3 innings.
Bailey does, however, have an encouraging history against the Giants, against whom he's gone 4-0 with a 3.57 ERA in eight starts. He's 2-0 with a 3.81 ERA in four starts at Oracle Park.
The A's soon figure to be looking to replace somebody with Sean Manaea, who has made six minor league starts as he attempts to prove he's fully healthy after experiencing a sore shoulder earlier this season.
Manaea struck out 10 in his most recent outing, prompting A's manager Bob Melvin to start planning ahead.
"I heard it was great," Melvin said to reporters before Tuesday's loss. "We'll discuss where we go next, but a very encouraging outing."
Cueto, Webb and Manaea are all possibilities by the time the A's and Giants meet again in Oakland on Aug. 24-25.
In the meantime, as each team has chased a wild card, the A's and Giants have both played break-even ball of late.
Oakland has alternated wins and losses in their last eight games, the last seven of which have been on the road.
The Giants, meanwhile, improved to 4-4 on their nine-game homestand with the Tuesday win.
--Field Level Media
Giants seek sweep of Bay Bridge Series