The Toronto Blue Jays could be without star center fielder Vernon Wells for up to eight weeks. After suffering its worst loss of the season, Toronto hopes the remainder of his absence goes a little better.
The Blue Jays (17-21) look to snap a three-game losing streak when they continue a four-game series against the Cleveland Indians (18-18) on Monday.
Wells was placed on the 15-day disabled list Saturday with a broken left wrist suffered making a diving catch Friday night. He’s expected to miss six to eight weeks.
“I want to stay with the team and give my support,” said Wells, who was hitting .281 with five homers and a team-leading 24 RBIs. “I’m a part of this team, though for a while it’s going to be as a cheerleader.”
“There’s no use complaining because that won’t help,” manager John Gibbons said. “We’ll try to play our best with the players we have. That’s all we can do.”
Wells’ injury comes at a bad time for the Blue Jays, who are averaging 2.8 runs in the last 23 games, during which it has scored more than five runs just once. The Blue Jays lost 12-0 to Cleveland on Saturday after losing 6-1 the night before.
“When Grady goes, we go,” third baseman Casey Blake said. “Not to put pressure on him, but he gives us a jolt at the top of the order.”
Blue Jays starter Dustin McGowan lasted just 3 2-3 innings after allowing nine runs.
Cleveland, looking to win its ninth straight at home over Toronto, sends Fausto Carmona (3-1, 2.95 ERA) to the mound on Sunday.
Carmona allowed three runs and six hits in five innings against the Yankees on Tuesday. He doesn’t have a decision in his last two starts and has walked 13 over his last three outings while only striking out five.
“He needs to do a better job getting the baseball over the plate,” Indians manager Eric Wedge told the team’s official Web site. “He’s a great competitor and he can get himself out of trouble because he can put the ball on the ground. But he hurts himself when he gets behind in the count.”
The right-hander has made only one start against Toronto, yielding three runs and eight hits in 5 1-3 innings of a 9-4 win last season.
The Blue Jays will counter with A.J. Burnett (3-3, 5.19), who has alternated between wins and losses in his last five starts. He allowed five runs and nine hits in six innings on Tuesday, striking out a season-high 10 in a 5-4 loss to Tampa Bay.
Burnett is 1-3 with an 8.46 ERA in four career starts against Cleveland - all three losses coming on the road.
Sizemore, who is 5-for-10 in this series, is 4-for-6 with two doubles and a home run against Burnett.