After ending their longest losing streak in 25 years, the Cleveland Indians will try to begin climbing back into the AL Central race as they open a four-game series with the Chicago White Sox at Jacobs Field.
The Indians were within a game of first-place Minnesota on Aug. 15 before losing nine in a row, their longest slide since 1979. They ended the skid with a come-from-behind 4-3 victory over the AL East-leading New York Yankees on Wednesday, averting a three-game sweep.
The Indians are eight games behind the Twins in the division, but have seven games remaining against the two-time defending Central champions.
Cleveland, which ranks second in the AL with 688 runs, has managed just 2.6 runs in its last 10 games. The Indians haven’t scored more than four runs since a 7-1 victory over the Twins on Aug. 14.
Travis Hafner, Cleveland’s leading hitter, went 1-for-3 on Wednesday with his first RBI in eight games. He is batting only .120 (3-for-25) over that span.
The White Sox, who were atop the AL Central by a half-game lead at the All-Star break, are nine games back.
Chicago comes into Cleveland after dropping two of three at Detroit with Wednesday’s 5-4 defeat. The White Sox have lost six of their last seven, getting outscored 46-21 in the losses.
Aaron Rowand hit a three-run homer for Chicago, extending his hitting streak to nine games. He is batting .457 (16-for-35) with three homers and nine RBIs during the run.