MLB This Week: A’s, Tigers, Cardinals and Pirates

There are nine MLB games starting before midnight U.K. time this working week.

The AL West-leading Oakland A’s are in action against the LA Angels on Wednesday, looking to capitalize on a weekend series sweep over the Texas Rangers. The big-spending Angels meanwhile look set to miss out on the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season and will be keen to end 2013 on a good note to raise hopes for a return to form next year.

The majority of the early games this week take place on Thursday, with the only disappointment being that ESPN (UK) will be showing Europa League games instead.

The Dodgers will start their series against the Diamondbacks on Monday with a magic number of 4, so they may have assured themselves of a playoff place by the time Ricky Nolasco takes to the mound on Thursday. However, the D-Backs will be desperate to prevent the Dodgers from undertaking any NL West celebrations on their own turf.

Rookie Gerrit Cole will start for the Pirates at PNC Park against the Padres in an important home series as the Buccos try to make it to the playoffs as division winners. The St. Louis Cardinals come into the week tied with the Pittsburgh in the NL Central and need to pick up some wins against the Rockies to keep the pressure on. It should be an intriguing pitching match-up on Thursday with rookie Michael Wacha facing veteran Roy Oswalt.

On Friday there’s an early game from Wrigley Field to end the working week as the Cubs host the playoff-bound Braves.

All times are in BST.

Monday 16 September

No early games

Tuesday 17 September

No early games

Wednesday 18 September

19.20. Minnesota at Chicago White Sox (Diamond – Danks)
20.35. LA Angels at Oakland (Vargas – Griffin) *ESPN

Thursday 19 September

17.35. San Diego at Pittsburgh (Kennedy – Cole)
18.08. Seattle at Detroit (Paxton – Fister) *BBC 5LSX
18.10. San Francisco at NY Mets (Bumgarner – Niese)
19.10. Chicago Cubs at Milwaukee (Arrieta – Lohse)
20.10. St. Louis at Colorado (Wacha – Oswalt) *MLB.com Free Game of the Day
20.40. LA Dodgers at Arizona (Nolasco – Miley)

Friday 20 September

19.20. Atlanta at Chicago Cubs (Maholm – Baker) *ESPN

All of these games are available to watch live via the MLB.TV subscription at MLB.com. The early games being shown on ESPN are highlighted above. BBC 5 Live Sports Extra can be found on digital radio, digital TV and on the BBC.co.uk website (coverage on the website is only available to UK residents). The complete schedule for this week’s MLB games can be found on MLB.com

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