The Cleveland Indians have tormented the Cincinnati Reds’
starting pitching this season.
It’s been Cleveland’s Fausto Carmona, however, who has had a
rough time getting opponents out.
Looking to shake an extended slump, Carmona takes the mound for
visiting Cleveland as it tries to continue its recent domination of
Cincinnati on Saturday when the teams continue a three-game
The Indians (43-37), who took all three meetings while
outscoring their in-state rival 19-9 in May, picked up right where
they left off, recording their highest run total in a month with
Friday’s 8-2 victory.
“We took the (overall) series, and hopefully we can take a few
more games,” winning pitcher Justin Masterson said.
Asdrubal Cabrera, Carlos Santana and Grady Sizemore each homered
against Bronson Arroyo, whose eight runs allowed raised the
Cincinnati starter’s ERA to 9.15 in the series this year.
Cleveland, which regained the AL Central lead, has taken five
straight from the Reds dating to last season, but will likely need
to get a better effort out of Carmona (4-10, 5.89 ERA) to extend
Carmona has lost seven of eight decisions while compiling an
8.58 ERA since May 19, owning both the worst record and the most
losses in the majors over that span.
The right-hander has been especially bad on the road during that
time frame, going 1-4 with a 9.75 ERA in five outings. He allowed
three runs and seven hits over six innings of Sunday’s 3-1 defeat
at San Francisco but was encouraged by his performance.
“I’m happy, because I pitched much better,” he said.
While Carmona has lost three consecutive interleague outings
with a 9.20 ERA, he has posted a solid 2.70 mark in two lifetime
starts against a Reds team which is 5-11 against the AL this
Cincinnati (42-42), which leads the NL with 4.78 runs per
contest, has scored three or fewer runs in seven of eight home
games. Joey Votto and Jay Bruce, who went a combined 0 for 7 on
Friday, haven’t been able to muster much offense.
Votto is 5 for 31 (.161) during the team’s 2-6 stretch at Great
American Ball Park while Bruce is 6 for 29 (.207).
In contrast, Brandon Phillips, who spent the first four years of
his career in Cleveland, went 3 for 4 – including his 1,000th
career hit – and provided all of Friday’s offense with two
Phillips, who is 3 for 6 lifetime versus Carmona, is hitting
.455 in his last 10 games. Votto is 2 for 6 against the righty and
Bruce is 2 for 2.
In his first start since missing a month with a sprained right
shoulder, Homer Bailey (3-2, 3.86) gave up season worsts of five
runs and nine hits in five innings of Sunday’s 7-5 defeat at
“Overall I thought I threw well, but unfortunately they hit,”
Like his counterpart, Bailey has faltered during interleague
play, going 1-2 with a 7.23 ERA over his last five games – four of
which have come against Cleveland.
Indians closer Chris Perez was placed on the bereavement list
prior to Friday’s game to attend his grandmother’s funeral. He’s
expected to return to the team Sunday.