After each team needed some late heroics in splitting the first two, the Diamondbacks and Indians could be in for an exciting conclusion to the set Wednesday at Chase Field.
One night after Orlando Cabrera(notes) hit a tiebreaking home run in the ninth inning to give Cleveland a 5-4 win, pinch-hitter Wily Mo Pena(notes) delivered a two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth to help Arizona snap a three-game skid with a 6-4 victory Tuesday.
The Diamondbacks (44-37), who improved to 9-5 during interleague play, are 2 1/2 games behind first-place San Francisco in the NL West.
Cleveland (41-37) is one game behind Detroit for the AL Central lead, but has lost six of eight - all against NL opponents.
The Indians hope for another strong outing from scheduled starter Carlos Carrasco(notes) (7-4, 3.62 ERA), who has allowed two earned runs and 18 hits over 29 2-3 innings while winning three of his last four starts.
The right-hander was charged with four runs - one earned - and did not issue a walk in eight innings of a 4-3 loss at San Francisco on Friday.
“I felt good and every pitch was working, especially the fastball,” Carrasco said. “I haven’t changed anything the last four games.”
Manager Manny Acta sees an overall change for the better in the 24-year-old Carrasco, who was 2-6 with a 5.51 ERA in 12 starts the previous two seasons.
“He’s maturing fast as a pitcher,” Acta said.
The left-hander was 1-1 with a 2.37 ERA in his first three starts after missing the first two months with a broken hand, but is 0-1 with a 10.29 ERA in his last three.
“It’s been frustrating, but I’ll keep working and give this team better efforts,” Duke told the Diamondbacks’ official website. “I realize it’s early on and I have better days ahead of me.”
Duke is 1-1 with a 2.77 ERA against the Indians, but has not faced them since 2009 while with Pittsburgh.
Back in the majors for the first time since 2008, Pena has three homers and five RBIs in eight games since the Diamondbacks called him up from the minors last week.