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White Sox-Indians Preview

9/28/2009

The Cleveland Indians finally found a way to score some runs over the weekend after two weeks of futility, but their suddenly resurgent offense may again be on the verge of disappearing.

The Indians will try to avoid another poor performance at the plate Tuesday night and snap a four-game home losing streak to the Chicago White Sox.

Cleveland (64-92) scored a total of 30 runs during an 11-game losing streak that was their longest in nearly eight decades, but it broke through last weekend. The Indians totaled 22 runs during a three-game sweep of Baltimore, led by four RBIs apiece from Asdrubal Cabrera and Andy Marte.

Cabrera and Marte couldn't stay hot Monday when the White Sox (76-81) began their final series at Progressive Field this season. The duo went 0 for 7 and Cleveland managed three hits in a 6-1 loss.

Chicago, meanwhile, has won both its games since blowing a 5-0 lead in a 12-5 loss to Detroit on Saturday. That sparked manager Ozzie Guillen's ire after his players were watching college football on TV in the clubhouse following the game.

"We got to go out there and compete," Guillen said. "That's the reason I got mad Saturday. You're paid a lot of money to be here and you have to go through the season. I don't want you to go through the motions."

The White Sox have averaged 7.3 runs during their four-game winning streak at Progressive Field largely thanks to Gordon Beckham. Chicago's rookie third baseman had three RBIs on Monday and is 10 for 16 with a homer and eight RBIs in his last four games in Cleveland.

Beckham is 1 for 2 in his career against Justin Masterson (4-9, 4.79 ERA), who will get the ball for the Indians hoping to end a personal five-game losing streak.

The right-hander, acquired in the deal that sent Victor Martinez to Boston, has especially struggled in his last two outings, going 0-2 with a 12.38 ERA. He gave up four runs before Cleveland came to bat Wednesday and allowed eight overall through four innings in an 11-3 loss to Detroit.

"Because the starting pitching position is so thin here and around the league, we have to continue to give him every opportunity as a starter," manager Eric Wedge told the Indians' official Web site. "He's shown that when he finds it, he'll give you quality starts."

Masterson is 0-0 with a 2.08 ERA in four career appearances against the White Sox. He gave up a run and four hits over four innings in his lone start on Aug. 8 in Chicago, leaving without a decision in an 8-5 loss.

Rookie Carlos Torres (1-1, 5.91) makes his first start for the White Sox since giving up five runs and recording only two outs in an 11-3 loss to Oakland on Sept. 8.

Torres has pitched twice out of the bullpen since, allowing three runs in 4 1/3 innings. He gave up four runs over 3 1/3 innings -- walking six -- while opposing Masterson on Aug. 8.

The White Sox haven't won five in a row in Cleveland since an eight-game streak from July 14, 2005-May 1, 2006.