American League Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, July 31st (All times Eastern)
Cleveland Indians (50-52) at Kansas City Royals (41-60), 8:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Cleveland - Derek Lowe (8-9, 5.09) Kansas City - Luke Hochevar (6-9, 5.26)
(Sports Network) - Derek Lowe tries to snap a personal three-game losing streak on Tuesday when he takes the ball for the Cleveland Indians in the opener of a three-game series against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium.
Lowe lost for the sixth time in seven decisions on Wednesday, as the Detroit Tigers battered him for five runs (4 earned) and eight hits in six innings to drop him to 8-9, while raising his ERA to 5.09.
Over his past 11 turns, Lowe has gone 2-7 with an 8.07 ERA, giving up 52 earned runs on 83 hits across 58 innings in that span.
"I've played this game too long to be searching," Lowe said. "I've struggled numerous times in my career. I guess it affects you because you're not pitching the way you'd like, but by no means do you go out there and think you're not going to get the job done.
"I've been fortunate to play 16 years, and I've struggled at times. I'm in a little funk, and you just keep pitching and keep plugging away."
Lowe beat the Royals earlier in the year as part of a 6-1 start to the season, but is 5-5 lifetime against them with a 4.52 ERA in 24 games (11 starts).
Cleveland continued to struggle this past weekend, as it was swept in a three- game set by the Minnesota Twins and has fallen five games off the pace in the American League Central.
"It's very disappointing: the way we played in this series, after such a great series we had at home," said Indians manager Manny Acta. "We understand that every day is a new day and every day is a challenge, but we weren't even a challenge to the Twins in this series."
The Indians have lost eight of their last 11 overall.
Kansas City, meanwhile, also enters this series on the heels of being swept. The Royals lost all four games of their set in Seattle and have lost five in a row and seven of their last eight.
Tonight, they turn to righty Luke Hochevar, who was atrocious in losing to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on Wednesday. Hochevar was hammered for eight runs (6 earned) in just three innings to fall to 6-9 on the year to go along with a 5.26 ERA.
"I was bad," said Hochevar, who had allowed more than three runs just once in his previous seven outings.
Hochevar has faced the Indians 13 times and is 5-8 with a 5.57 ERA against them.
Cleveland has won five of nine from the Royals this season.
07/31 10:34:18 ET