Forty eight hours ago, we were talking about how the Red Sox were surging after playing their best baseball all year, having won seven straight games and could match their 10-game losing streak with a 10-game win streak with a sweep of the lowly Indians.
Now, the Red Sox are staring down a sweep in Cleveland and are hoping to salvage just one of their three-game set with the Tribe.
Recently suspended Brandon Workman, who is allowed to play as he appeals his six-game ban, will make his third start of the year for the Red Sox on Wednesday. Workman was pitching well in his last outing, allowing two runs on four hits to the Rays in 5 1/3 innings, before he was ejected for throwing behind Evan Longoria. Overall on the year, Workman has made five appearances for the Red Sox this year – three of them starts – with an ERA of 3.24 in 16 2/3 total innings.
This is the first time in Workman’s career that he will face the Indians. He made four relief appearances against AL Central teams in 2013, going 2-0 with a 2.25 ERA. No current Cleveland batter has ever hit against Workman in the big leagues.
Corey Kluber, who has emerged as the Indians ace this season, gets the ball for the home team. The current AL strikeouts leader is 6-3 in 12 starts this season with a 3.04 ERA. He went 7 1/3 innings against the Colorado Rockies his last time out, allowing two runs on five hits, while issuing just one walk and picking up 12 strikeouts.
Kluber has made one career start against the Red Sox, allowing one run on three hits in 6 2/3 innings with a walk and 10 strikeouts on May 26, 2013. Five hitters on the Red Sox have faced Kluber in their careers; A.J. Pierzynski has seen him the most, going 3-for-10 with a home run and a walk. Dustin Pedroia and Stephen Drew have each gone 1-for-5, with Pedroia adding a walk, while Daniel Nava has two hits in four at bats and David Ortiz is hitless in three.