Cleveland (26-31) at Texas (29-30)

Fair Currently: Arlington, TX
Temp: 85° F
  • Game info: 8:05 pm EDT Tue Jun 3, 2008
Preview | Box Score | Recap

A prolonged lack of offense has been a cause of frustration for the Cleveland Indians in 2008. Facing the Texas Rangers could change that.

Coming off one of their better offensive nights of the season, the Indians look for another big night at the plate when they continue their four-game road series versus the Rangers on Tuesday.

Cleveland (26-31) avoided a third straight loss with a 13-9 win in Monday’s series opener. It was a rare offensive outburst for the Indians, who are hitting just .236 and near the bottom of the majors with 239 runs.

Casey Blake homered twice and matched a career high with seven RBIs as Cleveland scored its second-most runs of the season. Blake, hitting just .236, is 6-for-12 with three homers and nine RBIs in his last three contests.

“You could feel it,” Indians manager Eric Wedge said. “We knew we would have to keep scoring, keep taking advantage of opportunities.”

Ben Francisco and David Dellucci each added two-run homers for the Indians, who matched their run total from their previous four games in winning for just the fourth time in 16 contests.

“You have to keep scoring runs the first through the ninth innings,” Dellucci said. “You’ve got to keep putting heat on those guys.”

These teams have combined for 54 runs in splitting four games in 2008 and they could be in for another high-scoring night Tuesday.

Texas (29-30), which has allowed 13 runs in back-to-back losses, is near the bottom of the majors with a 4.99 ERA.

“Our offense is good, but you’ve got to hold the other team down,” Rangers manager Ron Washington said. “We hope we’ve got it all out of our system the last two days.”

With Vicente Padilla placed on the bereavement list, A.J. Murray (1-0, 3.38 ERA) was called up from Triple-A Oklahoma and will make his first start for the Rangers since May 3 on Tuesday.

Murray allowed two earned runs and six hits in 5 1-3 innings of a 6-3 victory at Oakland in his only appearance of 2008. The left-hander, who has made three career starts, has not allowed a run or hit over an inning in two relief appearances - both in 2007 - against Cleveland.

Cleveland’s Jake Westbrook was scheduled to make his second start Tuesday since coming off the disabled list last week, but was put back on the DL because of right elbow inflammation. Tom Mastny (0-0, 10.80) will make his first major league start.

The Indians will try to contain Texas’ Josh Hamilton, who went 2-for-4 and homered in his third straight game Monday.

Hamilton, the AL player of the month for April and May, is hitting .331 with an AL-best 16 homers and 65 RBIs. He’s 7-for-17 with seven RBIs in his last four contests.

“I come to the park, I know what I need to do to get ready for the game and I do it. Nothing is going to change,” Hamilton said. “I want to work harder and I want to do better.”

Hamilton is batting .353 (6-for-17) with a homer against Cleveland in 2008.

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Starting Pitchers

T. Mastny Mia vs. A. Murray Mil
2-2 Record 1-0
10.80 ERA 3.52
19 K 5
11 BB 3
1.95 WHIP 1.96


Tuesday, Jun 3