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.