Indians Game Information for Wednesday, July 18
CLEVELAND INDIANS (46-44, 3rd, -4.0 G) vs. TAMPA BAY RAYS (47-44)
RHP Justin Masterson (6-8, 4.14) vs.RHP Jeremy Hellickson (4-6, 3.48)
First Pitch: 7:10 p.m. (ET) at Tropicana Field
TV: STO Radio: WTAM, Indians Radio Network
TRIPPED UP: In addition to being held to an average of 3.0 runs in 5 games since the All-Star break, over 1.5 fewer runs than the club has averaged on the road all season (4.60), Cleveland’s offense has also batted .234 (37-158) on the current road trip, 21 points below the club’s overall .255 average away from Progressive Field this season…conversely, the club’s .358 on-base pct. on the current trip is actually 23 points higher than Cleveland’s .335 on-base pct. on the road overall in 2012, due in large part to the 28 walks drawn by Indians hitters over the last 5 games (5.6 walks-per-game)..however, Cleveland’s offense has also stranded a total of 40 men on base on the current road trip (8-per-game) as a direct result of going 6-for-43 (.140) with runners in scoring position over that stretch.
THE PEN IS MIGHTIER: TONY SIPP (1.1 IP) and JEREMY ACCARDO (1.0 IP) combined for 2.1 scoreless frames in last night’s defeat, as the Cleveland bullpen has kept opponents off the scoreboard in 9 of the club’s last 14 games since June 30, while posting a 2.23 ERA (10 ER/40.1 IP) and .189 (27-143) opponents’ avg in that span…that 2.23 relief ERA ranks 5th in the A.L. and 7th in the majors since June 30, while the .189 avg. is 4th-lowest in the majors behind Oakland (.156), Atlanta (.181) and Los Angeles-NL (.187).
REELING IN THE RAYS: The Indians are 72-45 all-time against Tampa Bay, including 30-27 at Tropicana Field…the Indians and Rays have alternated wins and losses over each of the last 8 games dating back to last season…Cleveland will be looking to win each of the next 2 tilts vs. the Rays, as the club is in search of its first series win at this venue since Aug. 17-19, 2007 – Indians are 5-13 at Tropicana Field since then.
EAST BOUND AND DOWN: Cleveland fell to 9-14 against A.L. East squads this season after last night’s loss…the Indians are a combined 29-20 against teams from the A.L. West (12-5) and A.L. Central (17-15).
AROUND THE BLOCK: Cleveland is 2-3 on artificial turf this season, needing to win both remaining games of this series at “The Trop” to secure the club’s first winning season on turf since 2007 (12-6)…Cleveland’s offense ranks among major league leaders in walks (1st, 337), on base pct. (4th, .334) and pitches-per-PA (9th, 3.88), but ranks 19th out of 30 teams with a .244 (198-810) team average w/ runners in scoring position and 26th with a .195 (16-82) avg. w/ the bases loaded…the Indians are 27-3 in games in which VINNIE PESTANO and CHRIS PEREZ both appear for the club.