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The Battle of Ohio, Part 2 Commences Friday Night In Cincinnati

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(Sports Network) - The Cleveland Indians kick off the final set in a nine-game road trip tonight when they visit their in-state rivals, the Cincinnati Reds, for the first of three interleague games at Great American Ball Park.

The Indians improved to 2-4 on the week-plus trip Wednesday night, when Orlando Cabrera had four hits, scored twice and drove in a run while Carlos Carrasco tossed seven strong innings in a 6-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the rubber match of a three-game series.

Asdrubal Cabrera also knocked in a run and finished 3-for-5 at the plate for the Indians, who won for just the second time in six games.

Carrasco (8-4) allowed just two runs on four hits and struck out seven to get his fourth win in June.

The Indians, who spent much of the early season in the lead in the American League's Central Division, are now second among the five teams but just a half-game behind front-running Detroit.

Right-hander Justin Masterson gets the call on the mound with a chance to end his own slump, which has left him winless in 11 starts since beginning the season with five wins in April.

The most recent defeat came on June 25 at San Francisco, where the 26-year-old allowed an unearned run on four hits in 6 2/3 innings of a 1-0 loss.

It was the sixth time this season Masterson has allowed just one run in a start, but the second time he's lost. In fact, during the now two-month skid, he's given up three runs or less seven times and pitched at least six innings eight times.

The Indians are 3-8 in those 11 games and 8-8 in his 16 overall outings.

He's 0-2 lifetime against the Reds with a 6.94 earned run average across 11 2/3 innings.

Cincinnati replies with veteran righty Bronson Arroyo, who'll go for a fourth straight win.

The 34-year-old downed Baltimore, 10-5, in an interleague start on June 25, allowing five runs on nine hits in 6 1/3 innings.

The Reds hit five home runs in support of his start.

Arroyo hasn't lost since a 4-1 decision against the Chicago Cubs dropped him to 4-6 on the season.

He is 5-3 lifetime against Cleveland with a 3.61 ERA.

On Wednesday, Ryan Hanigan went 2-for-3 with a three-run homer to help the Reds hold off the hosting Tampa Bay Rays, 4-3, in the rubber match of a three- game interleague series.

Fred Lewis added a key RBI single in the seventh for the Reds, who improved to 8-1 all-time against the Rays.

Edinson Volquez (5-3) gave up three runs on four hits over 6 1/3 innings to pick up his first victory since June 7. He also struck out seven and walked three.

The Indians swept a three-game home set from the Reds on May 20-22, giving them a win in five of the past seven meetings. Cincinnati, though, has won seven of the past nine played at Great American Ball Park.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.