Sunday, April 25, 2015, 1:08 ET, Comerica Park
TV: MLB.TV, STO-HD
For the third straight series on this road trip, the Indians are in a position to win the series. They lost the first two rubber games on this road trip, but by winning today they'll finish the trip 4-5, which wouldn't look that bad considering the circumstances. The matchup (on paper) seems favorable:
|CLEVELAND INDIANS||DETROIT TIGERS|
|Jason Kipnis - 2B||Rajai Davis - CF|
|Mike Aviles - SS||Ian Kinsler - 2B|
|Michael Brantley - LF||Miguel Cabrera - 1B|
|Carlos Santana - 1B||Victor Martinez - DH|
|Ryan Raburn - DH||J.D. Martinez - RF|
|Brandon Moss - RF||Yoenis Cespedes - LF|
|Lonnie Chisenhall - 3B||Nick Castellanos - 3B|
|Roberto Perez - C||James McCann - C|
|Michael Bourn - CF||Jose Iglesias - SS|
|Carlos Carrasco - RHP||Kyle Lobstein - LHP|
..but Lobstein is left-handed, and in case you haven't just appeared from under a rock (in which case, welcome back!), the Indians really really bad against left-handed pitching. Today's lineup features Michael Bourn hitting ninth, which might help a bit. The only reason Bourn isn't sitting is that Terry Francona doesn't have a credible center fielder right now.
Lobstein has had some issues with walks early in the season, so perhaps the plan of attack will be to work counts, get Lobstein out of the game relatively early, and go to work on the Detroit bullpen. On paper that would seem to work, but thus far paper and reality haven't been in sync, at least on the offensive side.