The Blue Jays look to avoid a fifth consecutive loss to the Indians at Rogers Centre on Tuesday in the finale of a two-game set.
Toronto (18-10) had its five-game home winning streak snapped with a 9-7 loss in 12 innings on Monday. That dropped the Blue Jays to 10-4 at home, where they have yet to lose back-to-back games or a series in 2009.
Cleveland (10-16), though, continued its success in Toronto after sweeping a three-game set from Aug. 8-10 in its only trip there last season. The Indians are in position to win this brief set after the Blue Jays took two of three in Cleveland from April 10-12.
Recalled from the minors on Saturday, Josh Barfield was one of five Indians with two hits, and delivered the game-winning RBI during a three-run 12th. Grady Sizemore and Asdrubal Cabrera each drove in two runs for Cleveland, which had all 15 of its hits after the sixth inning.
“We haven’t caught too many breaks until this point and we finally did,” Indians reliever Jensen Lewis said. “It took everybody to win this game and we’ll just use this momentum going into (Tuesday).”
The Indians rallied from a run down with three in the ninth, and then managed to overcame blowing a two-run lead in the bottom of the inning to avoid their third straight loss overall.
“We’ve been playing really hard and a lot of things haven’t really gone our way in the first couple of months,” Cleveland’s Ryan Garko said. “It’s nice to finally have some balls fall in and get some results.”
Victor Martinez doubled and drove in a run Monday for the Indians to extend his hitting streak to 13 games. He is batting .400 (20-for-50) during that span.
Trying to post consecutive victories for the first time since April 15-16, Cleveland hopes to get the best of Toronto’s Brett Cecil, who will make his major league debut.
Cecil, the 38th overall pick in the 2007 draft, takes the place of injured rookie Ricky Romero in the rotation. The 22-year-old left-hander struggled at Triple-A Las Vegas, going 0-3 with an 8.31 ERA, but won’t let that overshadow this opportunity.
“I have a lot of confidence in myself,” Cecil told the Blue Jays’ official Web site.
The Indians counter with Anthony Reyes (1-0, 7.58 ERA), who has not received a decision of his last four starts. The right-hander allowed seven runs and nine hits in two innings of a 9-8 win over Boston on Tuesday.
Facing Toronto might help Reyes bounce back from that rough outing. He is 2-0 with a 3.65 ERA against the Blue Jays.
Barajas, who’s become the team’s everyday catcher, is 11-for-22 during a six-game hitting streak and has 12 RBIs in his last 11 contests.