Indians what to watch for: Tomlin looks to rebound

In last Sunday's 10-4 loss to Detroit, Tomlin couldn't made it out of the fifth inning.

Ken Blaze/Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Tomlin got off to a quick start when he was called up from Columbus and joined the Indians rotation in early May. He won three of his first four appearances and had a 2.91 ERA. Since then he has struggled.

Going into tonight’s game against Seattle, the right-hander has won only one of his past six starts and has pitched six innings or less in all but one. Since nearly having a complete game at Texas on June 7, when he went eight innings and allowed only three runs, Tomlin has allowed 13 earned runs in 15 innings in his past three starts along with giving up four home runs.

In last Sunday’s 10-4 loss to Detroit, Tomlin couldn’t made it out of the fifth inning, when the Tigers chased him with seven runs in the fourth. His defense didn’t help out with two errors in the frame. In four-plus innings, Tomlin gave up eight runs and eight hits but only five were earned. It is the first time that he has lost three consecutive starts since July 17-27, 2012.

Indians-Mariners Preview

In Tomlin’s nine starts, teams are batting just .227 the first time through the lineup but the average jumps to .300 after that. Tomlin (4-5, 4.39 ERA this season) has had success against the Mariners in the past. In four previous starts he has gone 3-1 with a 4.62 ERA.

After a 3-2 loss in the opening game of the series on Friday, the Tribe has dropped five of its last six and are 1-2 on their eight-game swing out west. The Mariners have won six of seven and are 3-1 during a six-game homestand.

Indians Live starts at 9:30 p.m. on SportsTime Ohio.

Here are other things to watch in tonight’s game:

STRUGGLING IN SEATTLE: Cleveland is 35-28 at Safeco Field, which is the second-best mark among American League teams but it has dropped six of its last seven and seven of its last 10. From 2004-11, the Tribe were 23-10 in games at Seattle.

BOURN STREAKING: Michael Bourn, who was 3 for 5 with an RBI on Friday, has a six-game hitting streak and is 11 for 28 during that span. Since May 17 he has a hit in 31 of 37 games and is batting .293 with two home runs and 10 RBI.

BROKEN CLUTCH: The Indians were 1 of 9 on Friday with runners in scoring position after going 9 for 33 the past three games. Prior to that, they had nine straight games where they had one or no hits with runners in scoring position.

TOMLIN VS. MARINERS: Robinson Cano 5-11, HR; Dustin Ackley 3-7; Kyle Seager 4-6; Michael Saunders 2-4; Willie Bloomquist 2-3.

MARINERS STARTER: Rookie Roenis Elias (7-5, 3.74) faces Cleveland for the first time. The left-hander, who is 4-1 in June, is the first Mariners pitcher since 1993 to go from Double A to the Majors. Among Major League rookie pitchers, he is second in wins (7) and third in strikeouts (85).

NEW TEAM, DIFFERENT RESULTS? Robinson Cano went 0 for 4, which was only the sixth time in his past 29 games against Cleveland that he has gone hitless. Since May 29, 2010, Cano is hitting .385 (45 of 117) with nine home runs and 27 RBI.

EAGER SEAGER: Third baseman Kyle Seager went 3 for 4 last night continuing his battering of Indians pitching. Over his career, Seager is 32 of 81 (.395) with 12 doubles, two home runs and six RBI.