(Sports Network) - The Toronto Blue Jays and Cleveland Indians have split the first two games of this weekend's set and a series victory is up for grabs this afternoon at Rogers Centre.
Cleveland dwells in the basement of the AL Central with a 43-61 record, while Toronto's solid 54-50 mark still relegates the team to fourth place in the AL East, 12 1/2 games back of the Yankees.
Jeanmar Gomez will make just his second major league start today for the Indians. The 22-year-old hurler's starting debut came back on June 18 when he pitched seven scoreless innings to beat the Tigers. Gomez's 5.20 ERA at the Triple-A level is far from impressive, but the Indians still have high hopes for the righty.
Toronto will counter Gomez with Jesse Litsch, who is 1-4 this season with a 5.48 ERA, numbers that can obviously stand some improvement. Litsch has pitched eight games so far this season and has permitted 47 hits and 13 walks in 42 2/3 innings. He did not figure in the decision against Detroit on Sunday after allowing two earned runs in 5 2/3 innings of action.
Litsch faced Cleveland for the first time earlier this season and lost the game despite allowing two earned runs in six innings.
On Saturday, Shin-Soo Choo went 2-for-5 and hit the go-ahead RBI double in the seventh inning, as the Indians edged the Blue Jays, 2-1.
The victory snapped Cleveland's three-game slide and comes on a busy day for the Indians, who continued to make moves. Following their trade of Austin Kearns to the Yankees on Friday, they shipped Jake Westbrook to the St. Louis Cardinals in a three-team trade and dealt Kerry Wood to the Yankees on Saturday.
Westbrook was supposed to start Saturday's contest, but was scratched shortly before the game, and Josh Tomlin got the ball for his second major league start. Tomlin allowed one run in 5 1/3 innings, while Jensen Lewis (3-2) got the victory for pitching an inning of scoreless relief.
"I found out about it last night," Tomlin said of the trade. "I knew ahead of time it could be a possibility. It wasn't a for-sure deal, so I came in today ready to go just in case."
Cleveland has won five of its nine meetings with the Jays this season.