Posted April 19, 2013 on
AP on Fox
The Houston Astros and Cleveland Indians have both gotten off to lackluster starts. So have the starters for Friday night's series opener.
Lucas Harrell and former Astro Brett Myers each seek their first win of the season while helping their respective clubs snap lengthy losing streaks.
After losing 213 games the past two seasons, Houston (4-11) was hardly expected to be competitive in its first AL season, and the Astros have already produced their second skid of five games or more after getting swept in Oakland this week.
In Wednesday's finale, Houston's rally from a six-run deficit fell short in a 7-5 loss.
"We have a resilient group and we will continue to battle to the end," manager Bo Porter said. "I don't believe in moral victories; you either win or lose. But at the same time I liked that we kept fighting."
The Astros return home trying to avoid a sixth straight loss at Minute Maid Park.
Harrell (0-2, 5.63 ERA) will hope to help snap that skid after bouncing back from a disastrous home outing against Oakland by holding the Angels to a run over 5 2-3 innings Saturday. Houston's bullpen, though, failed to hold a three-run lead in a 5-4 defeat.
The Astros will also try to hand Myers (0-2, 8.82) another loss in his return to Houston. The right-hander started 66 games in 2010-11 before working as a reliever in 2012 and recording 19 saves in 21 tries.
Myers was traded in July to the White Sox, who later declined to pick up his option. He signed a one-year, $7 million contract with Cleveland in January but hasn't fared well so far with his new team.
Myers, though, had his best start of the season Sunday after getting tagged for seven runs in each of his first two games. He gave up two runs over six innings to the White Sox in a 3-1 defeat.
"It's easy to tell somebody to have confidence," manager Terry Francona said. "But once you do it and you feel good about yourself, the idea then is to grow off of that and continue to do that. I'm sure it helped. It should. He threw the ball very well."
Myers will try to build on that outing while helping the Indians (5-9) avoid a 10th loss in 13 games. Cleveland has been outscored 22-9 during its latest skid, which hit four with Thursday's 6-3 loss to Boston.
The loss of leadoff hitter Michael Bourn has hardly helped. The former Astros outfielder, who was batting .333, was placed on the disabled list Wednesday with a lacerated right finger suffered in Sunday's loss to the White Sox.
Bourn's absence might help Harrell avenge a hard-luck 2-0 defeat to Cleveland on June 22. He had a career-high nine strikeouts while giving up one run and two hits over seven innings.
The Astros bounced back to win the final two games in that series, the first meeting between the clubs in 11 years.
BEST OF MAXIM
Houston left fielder J.D. Martinez has left Friday night's game against the Indians after spraining his right knee while batting in the fourth inning.
Martinez was injured on a check swing. His knee buckled and he fell to the ground in pain.
He remained on the ground for a couple of minutes while Astros trainers attended to him. He was then helped to his feet and hobbled with...
On Wednesday afternoon the Cleveland Indians announced that right-handed pitcher Corey Kluber was recalled from Triple-A Columbus and outfielder Michael Bourn was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a lacerated right index finger (retroactive to April 15).
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Around the Farm takes a quick look at some of yesterday’s performances by Indians prospects throughout the system. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday’s game.
Note: Both Carolina and Lake County were postponed due to inclement weather.
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Bauer’s start against Toledo was one of the most positive...
After watching Ubaldo Jimenez on Tuesday, I was happy to know Justin Masterson would be taking the hill in this game. In the last five games the Indians had only scored more than two runs once, Saturday’s 9-4 victory over Chicago. With the offense scuffling, a strong starting pitching performance seemed necessary to give the team a chance to even up the...
Twenty-five years ago, when they were briefly teammates on a typically mediocre 1980s Cleveland Indians squad, John Farrell seemed to bring out the best in Terry Francona. I’m not just basing that on some random, hazy childhood memories, either. I actually went to the trouble of looking it up—which should say something about how entertaining last night’s ballgame was. ...
The 2013 MLB Draft is set to begin June 6th and we're going to try and provide at least one or two things per week between now and then.
The Astros had the first pick in the 2012 MLB Draft and they again have the top pick. Last year, Mark Appel was rated by some as the top draft prospect. He's rated by nearly everyone as the top draft prospect this year. A year ago the Astros...
Cleveland Indians (5-9) at Houston Astros (4-11)
Series 6, Games 15, 16 and 17
Minute Maid Park, Houston: 0.883*, Pitchers park
The Astros are probably the worst team in the American League, maybe in all of baseball. The organization, led by new general manager Jeff Luhnow and assistant GM David Stearns, trimmed the payroll to $26.1 million...
WILMINGTON, DE- On Wednesday, the Carolina Mudcats dropped their season-high fifth straight game and were swept by the Wilmington Blue Rocks by a score of 6-2. The Mudcats struggled to get anything going offensively all day, ending the road trip 1-5 and 5-7 overall.
The game started out exactly like the Mudcats wanted it to. Designated hitter Tony Wolters slapped a double to...
The Inside Pitch is back on the cyberwaves tonight from 8:00pm – 9:00pm EST. The one hour show airs every Thursday and is hosted by IndiansBaseballInsider.com’s Andrew Zajac and Jeff Ellis.
In tonight's show, Andrew and Jeff will dive into the Indians, Browns, and the Cavs. On the Indians front, how short of a leash should management have with Ubaldo? Who could they have...
With Friday night’s disheartening 3-2 loss at the Houston Astros, your Cleveland Indians are now 5-10 on the season. They’ve lost 110 of 13 since winning the first two ballgames of the season and have lost five straight dating back to Sunday afternoon against Chicago.
First, the important news: It’s sensationally early in the season. According to some preliminary math, it would...
Player of the Game
Lonnie Chisenhall provided the Indians with their only 2 runs, hitting a 2-run home run in the 4th innings. This is Chisenhall's first Player of the Game this year with a score of 4.18.
Though Brett Myers appeared to be pitching injured, he pitched 5 solid innings. Myers did give up 2 home runs, but limited the Astros to just 3 runs...
The "Radar Report" returns this week, and Tony shares almost three dozen radar readings from players in the Indians' system that he has recorded over the past few weeks. This is a premium site feature which will post about once a month and provide the fastball - and at times the secondary velocities - and in this report he has the readings on several players such as...
“Wild Thing” [bum bum bah bah bah] You make my heart sing [bum bum bah bah bah]…” (
Cleveland Indians “farmhand” (really?) Daisuke Matsuzaka seems to be emulating the Indians fan favorite Rick Vaughn (a.k.a. Charlie Sheen) in everyone’s favorite late 1980′s baseball movie “Major League”. After getting “red tagged” out of Spring Training, Matsuzaka figured...
It’s that elusive, sometimes seemingly unattainable goal of trying to upgrade your seats once you get to a game. I’m now convinced that at least one fan of the Cleveland Indians has it figured out.
At Saturday’s contest against the Chicago White Sox, he shared the trick to all 11,422 fans (I was one of them) in attendance.
At first glance...