Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 5/24/12

The Indians completed a three-game sweep of Detroit with a 2-1 victory over Tigers' ace Justin Verlander on Thursday. The Indians' victory, and the early season fortunes of both teams recall the starts of both teams last season.

Last year, the Indians were the dominant team in the American League Central Division for the first four months of the season. On May 23, they had a record of 30-15, the best in the majors, and they were in first place by seven games in the AL Central.

It was all down hill from there for the Indians, who dropped out of first place on July 22. The Tigers mounted a furious second half charge, while the Indians were fading.

Detroit wound up winning the division by 15 games over the second place Indians, who finished with a losing record at 80-82.

This year is starting the same way. Following their sweep of the Tigers, the Indians' record is 26-18, and they had a six-game lead over third-place Detroit.

"It's more exciting this year, because it's not like we've been playing so high, with everything going our way and you think it's eventually going to even out," winning pitcher Justin Masterson said.

"This year we've been playing decently consistent. Nobody is playing out of their shoes."

Manager Manny Acta has echoed those sentiments throughout the Indians' hot start. He frequently points out that the Indians don't feel they have played their best baseball yet, and he's probably right.

For starters, the Indians' top two starting pitchers, Masterson and Ubaldo Jimenez, have struggled. Masterson has won only two games and Jimenez has a 5.02 ERA.

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