After recording their first win under new manager Manny Acta, the Cleveland Indians will go for season-opening series victory for the fourth time in five years against the Chicago White Sox on Thursday.
Acta replaced Eric Wedge after the Indians went 65-97 last season and finished fourth in the AL Central. Cleveland (1-1) won its first game under Acta after beating Chicago 5-3 on Wednesday.
The win snapped a 16-game road losing streak for the Indians dating back to last season, which included a 6-0 loss to the White Sox (1-1) on Monday in which they were limited to four singles.
On Wednesday, Fausto Carmona(notes) worked around six walks by yielding only one hit—a two-run homer to Paul Konerko(notes)—as the Indians rallied with three runs in the fourth and took the lead in the seventh on Matt LaPorta’s(notes) run-scoring double.
“Under the circumstances and all the walks, (Carmona) did a tremendous job just keeping us in the game and giving us a chance to win,” Acta said.
Grady Sizemore(notes), who the Indians are hoping to get a big year from as they try to bounce back from a disappointing season, recorded a two-run single in the fourth while Shin-Soo Choo(notes) had two hits and scored twice.
Sizemore batted .248 and had 64 RBIs in an injury-plagued 2009 season, his worst since playing 43 games in 2004.
Cleveland lost its season-opening series to Texas last season but won the first series of the year the previous three seasons—all against the White Sox.
It was the second homer in as many games for Konerko, but Chicago had just one other hit.
“I felt pretty good up there,” Konerko said. “I was just trying to swing at good pitches.”
Masterson came to Cleveland in a four-player trade last year with Boston that sent Victor Martinez(notes) to the Red Sox. The right-hander went 1-7 with a 4.80 ERA in 10 starts with he Indians, but he had two solid outings against the White Sox, allowing two runs and eight hits over 13 innings. He was 0-1 in those games.
Masterson is hoping that having a consistent role this season after moving back and forth from the bullpen will help improve his record.
“Mentally, it’s a good place to be,” he told the Indians’ official Web site. “I’m working to get a routine as a starter.”
Floyd won two of his three starts against the Indians last season, and the right-hander is 4-2 with a 4.30 ERA in his career against them.