(Sports Network) - Clay Mortensen makes an emergency start for the Oakland Athletics this evening when they continue their three-game series with the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field.
Mortensen will be filling in for Dallas Braden, who is still battling stiffness in his pitching elbow. Mortensen, meanwhile, has posted a 10-2 mark with a 3.58 ERA for Triple-A Sacramento this season, while striking out 77 batters in 98 innings.
"We'd like to see a performance similar to what he's been doing," Oakland manager Bob Geren said. "He's been throwing strikes and throwing his sinker for strikes. That's his key pitch, so that's what you want to see."
As for the Indians, they will turn to Jake Westbrook, who is coming off his fifth win on the season. The last time the crafty right-hander was on the hill, he limited Toronto to just one run in six innings.
It was just the second win at home in seven starts for Westbrook, who has accumulated a lackluster 4.60 earned run average at Progressive Field this year.
Earlier this season Westbrook was defeated by Oakland, as he allowed four runs in five innings of work. Pitching against the Athletics has been a problem for the Westbrook, who is just 5-6 with a 4.08 ERA in 14 games against the team from the AL West.
On Friday, Gio Gonzalez scattered five hits over 6 2/3 innings and pitched the surging A's to a 3-0 win.
Gonzalez (7-5) won for the first time in five starts coming off a pair of tough no-decisions in which he yielded just one earned run over 13 innings. On Friday, the lefty worked around four walks and fanned five.
Craig Breslow struck out three of the four batters he faced in relief of Gonzalez and Andrew Bailey worked a spotless ninth for his 16th save to complete the blanking.
Mark Ellis hit a two-run double in the sixth for some insurance and Jack Cust forced in a run in the game's first inning with one of his three walks. He also doubled for Oakland, which has won six of the last seven games.
Cleveland's Mitch Talbot (8-7) was touched for five hits and three runs -- two of them earned -- and walked four in a 5 1/3-inning start.
The Indians managed just five hits -- two from Jayson Nix -- as the club saw its season-high, five-game winning streak go by the wayside.
Oakland won two of three matchups versus the Tribe from April 23-25 this season at the Coliseum and is 8-1 in the past nine meetings between the teams. The Indians have won six of eight as the host in this series.