Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/18/12

If the Oakland A's are to remain in the playoff hunt, their rookie starters will have to continue to pitch well in the final 16 games of the season.

A.J. Griffin, undefeated in 11 big-league starts, pitches at Detroit on Tuesday, followed by the lone non-rookie, Brett Anderson, on Wednesday. Tommy Milone starts the series finale Thursday,

Then it's on to Yankee Stadium, where Jarrod Parker, Dan Straily and Griffin each will pitch for the first time against a club that is leading the AL East. Finally, the A's head to Texas for four, with everyone but Griffin getting a start there.

Griffin, Anderson and Parker have been pitching particularly well, and Griffin is the guy the A's might want to have available in all three series: He is 6-0 with a 1.94 ERA over his first 11 starts, and he's the first Oakland pitcher ever to start his career 6-0.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, since earned runs became an official stat in 1913 in AL, he is just the second pitcher to go undefeated in his first 11 starts while maintaining an ERA under 2.00. Jered Weaver went 9-0 with a 1.96 ERA over his first 12 starts in 2006.

The A's enter the week three games behind Texas in the AL West race. Oakland is 1 1/2 games ahead of Baltimore in the race for the top AL wild-card spot. The Angels are two games behind the Orioles in the chase for the second wild card.

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