(Sports Network) - Jered Weaver hopes to claim his first victory in well over a month this evening when the Angels' hurler takes the hill in the second contest of a three-game series with the hosting Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field.
Weaver hasn't won in six starts since his last victory on Aug. 6, going 0-4 with a solid 3.43 earned run average. The Angels had scored just one run total in his previous four starts before notching a 4-3 victory over Seattle in his last appearance on Friday. However, Weaver got a no-decision after Los Angeles blew a ninth-inning lead before winning the contest in the 14th inning. The 27-year-old gave up just a run on five hits with six strikeouts over eight innings.
Weaver is second in the majors with 211 strikeouts and is 11-11 in 30 starts this year with a 3.06 ERA. The right-hander bested the Indians on April 26 with six innings of one-run ball, fanning seven while improving to 3-1 with a 3.86 ERA in nine career starts against them.
Cleveland's Jeanmar Gomez also brings a tough-luck winless drought into his first ever meeting with the Angels. The 22-year-old is 0-3 over his last four starts despite allowing just two runs in three of those contests.
That includes a loss in Seattle in his last start on Sept. 5, when the righty gave up two runs on seven hits over six innings of a 3-0 loss. Gomez then had his next start skipped in an effort to limit his innings.
Gomez is 3-3 with a 3.07 ERA in eight starts this year, including 2-0 with a 1.50 ERA in four outings at home.
Gomez will get a chance at pitching his club to a series victory tonight after Cleveland took Tuesday's opener, 4-3. Shelley Duncan's second career multi- homer game, and first since 2007, paced the offense as he drove in all four runs to tie a career high on two homers and an RBI single.
Michael Brantley extended his hitting streak to 14 games, the longest for an Indians rookie since 1986, and Josh Tomlin allowed three runs over 6 2/3 innings to get the win, which snapped a brief two-game slide for the Tribe.
"I think the only thing that hurt me in this game was later in the game, I was missing over the plate," Tomlin said. "I was a little bit up."
The Angels got within one run on RBI hits by Bobby Wilson and Peter Bourjos in the seventh inning, but could do no further damage and had a four-game winning streak end. Scott Kazmir had his winless streak stretch to seven starts after giving up four runs in 5 2/3 frames.
"I'm just trying to repeat my delivery a little bit more and throw my fastball to both sides of the plate," Kazmir said. "It just hasn't been there for me throughout this whole year, and it seems like I'm starting to get into a groove, but I'm trying to get too fine with certain pitches."
The Indians have won four of seven over the Angels this year and this series represents the first played in Cleveland between the two clubs in 2010.