CLEVELAND, OH - JULY 23: Catcher Matt Wieters #32 of the Baltimore Orioles forces out Asdrubal Cabrera #13 of the Cleveland Indians at home plate during the eighth inning at Progressive Field on July 23, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Indians Vs. Orioles: Cleveland Staves Off Sweep With Justin Masterson On The Mound

The free-falling Indians avoided a four-game sweep at the hands of the Orioles on Monday, with Justin Masterson leading the way on the mound.

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Indians Vs. Orioles Final Score: Cleveland's 9th Inning Comeback Falls Short In 4-3 Defeat

The second half of the baseball season is beginning to slip away from the Cleveland Indians, as Sunday's 4-3 defeat at the hands of the Baltimore Orioles signaled the fourth consecutive loss for Manny Acta's slumping club.

Now behind three games to none in the four-game series that will wrap up from Progressive Field on Monday, Acta will need to find a way to kickstart an offense that continues to wait until the final innings each game to start producing something from the plate. And with just four hits produced on Sunday against Baltimore starter Zach Britton in yet another slow start offensively, things are looking especially bleak at the worst possible time for the former early-season kings of the American League Central.

First baseman Carlos Santana finally put the Indians on the scoreboard in the bottom of the ninth inning with a two-run blast, and designated hitter Travis Hafner followed suit with a RBI single that pulled the deficit to a mere run. But after walking the game-tying run into scoring position, Orioles closer Jim Johnson closed the door to abruptly halt Cleveland's late rally.

All eyes will be on Justin Masterson on Monday as he looks to both right the ship and help avoid the sweep in the fourth and final game of the series.

For more on the Indians, head over to Let's Go Tribe. For more on the Orioles, visit Camden Chat. And for more MLB news and analysis be sure to check out Baseball Nation.


Indians Vs. Orioles Final Score: Cleveland Falls Back To .500 After 3-1 Loss

The Cleveland Indians fell back to .500 for the first time in July on Saturday, as the visiting Baltimore Orioles edged out a 3-1 victory in the second game of the series.

Cleveland hitters could only muster one run offensively after producing just a pair in Friday's 10-2 blowout loss, and will now need to look to Sunday's game three to hopefully salvage the four-game series. Although starter Zach McAllister pitched well enough to win through 7.2 innings with six strikeouts and three earned runs, the 24-year-old youngster fell to 4-2 on the season after his team was unable to provide any tangible run support.

The lone bright spot of the evening came right before many fans were even settled into their seats, as leadoff hitter Shin-Soo Choo belted a solo home run to open the game in the bottom of the first inning. The blast signified Choo's 11th of the season, but represented just one of seven hits for the Indians total in the game.

Manny Acta will give the ball to right-hander Josh Tomlin for Sunday's pivotal afternoon game three, while the Orioles will send coveted lefty prospect Zach Britton to the mound.

For more on the Indians, visit Let's Go Tribe. For more Orioles news, check out Camden Chat. And for more MLB coverage, head over to Baseball Nation.

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