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Two veteran pitchers nearing (General)

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CLEVELAND — the end of forgettable seasons will oppose each other on the mound Wednesday night as the Cleveland Indians host the Chicago White Sox in the final contest of their three-game series.Cleveland’s starter will be 33-year-old Josh Tomlin (1-5 http://www.angelsfanproshop.com/authentic-chris-young-jersey , 6.49 ERA), while the White Sox starter will be 36-year-old James Shields (7-16, 4.53).Tomlin, who won 10 games last year and 13 in 2016, lost his spot in Cleveland’s starting rotation early in this season and has spent most of the year being used out of the bullpen. In seven starts, he is 0-3 with a 7.68 ERA. In 22 relief appearances, he is 1-2 with a 4.91 ERA.Article continues below ...With Cleveland manager Terry Francona tinkering with his starting rotation in preparation for the postseason, Tomlin has made some spot starts recently, the last of those coming Friday, when he got no decision in a 5-4 Cleveland loss to Detroit.Tomlin pitched four innings, allowing two runs and five hits, with two strikeouts and one walk. His last start against the White Sox came Oct. 1, 2017, a 3-1 victory in which he pitched 5 1/3 innings, giving up one run and four hits, with six strikeouts and no walks.Tomlin has made two appearances against Chicago this year Cam Bedrosian Jersey , both in relief. He’s pitched a total of 1 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing one hit, with one strikeout and no walks. In 16 career appearances (13 starts) against the White Sox, Tomlin is 5-5 with a 3.66 ERA.Although the Indians have clinched the American League Central title, their remaining games are important for some players who might be on the bubble as far as being on the team’s postseason roster. One of those is side-arming reliever Adam Cimber, who was acquired from San Diego in a mid-season trade that also brought closer Brad Hand to Cleveland.Cimber, a right-hander, was very effective in San Diego, where in 42 appearances he had a 3.17 ERA and averaged 9.5 strikeouts per nine innings. However, in 23 appearances in Cleveland he has a 4.91 ERA with three strikeouts in 14 2/3 frames.“In some cases, he hasn’t pitched full innings because we have so many left-handers (in the bullpen),” Indians manager Terry Francona said. “He’s also been really unlucky. There have been times when he has made good pitches, but a ball has hit right on the foul line, or there have been some bloop hits.”Shields is completing his 13th year in the major leagues. His last start was an 8-6 victory over Baltimore on Friday, when he pitched six innings, allowing two runs and four hits http://www.angelsfanproshop.com/authentic-blake-wood-jersey , with five strikeouts and one walk. In three starts in September, Shields is 2-1 with a 4.41 ERA.Shields’ last start against Cleveland came Aug. 11, a 3-1 loss in which he pitched seven innings, giving up three runs (two earned), seven hits, with four strikeouts and no walks. In two starts against the Indians this year, he is 1-1 with a 1.93 ERA. For his career, Shields has started 22 games against Cleveland and is 5-8 with a 3.79 ERA.The White Sox, who have lost three in a row, including the first two games of this series, need to win four of their last 11 games to avoid the fourth 100-loss season in franchise history. The White Sox are 0-8 versus the Indians at Progressive Field this year and 3-12 against them overall. HOUSTON — The standard of expectation is so high for the Houston Astros, reigning World Series champions and possessors of the second-best record in baseball, that any unusually poor performance subsequently demands a lengthy explanation from all the involved parties.On Wednesday, the Astros (95-67) closed their season series against the Seattle Mariners with a thud, suffering a 9-0 loss that matched their largest defeat by margin on the season. Houston suffered a pair of nine-run setbacks in the span of six days in late July and are a robust 35-8 in blowouts (games decided by five or more runs) this season. Yet, with a postseason berth nearly clinched and the hard-charging Oakland Athletics in dogged pursuit for the American League West title and the No. 2 seed in the playoff picture Zack Greinke Jersey , the timing of the performance troubled.“September baseball,” said Astros manager A.J. Hinch, whose club is 13-4 this month. “I know that’s kind of a thing this year where everybody is using a lot of pitchers. It’s a lot easier to do it in September. It’s a challenge. It’s no different than when you run into a spot starter, you run into a game where they can utilize their whole bullpen depending on their schedule.”Article continues below ...Right-hander Gerrit Cole (14-5, 2.88 ERA) will start on eight days of rest on Friday when the Astros host the Los Angeles Angels for their final series of the regular season at Minute Maid Park. Cole was slated to start on Tuesday against the Mariners but was pushed back in deference to additional rest for the stretch run. He has allowed two runs in each of his last three starts and is 2-0 with a 3.24 ERA this month. Cole has faced the Angels three times in 2018, going 1-1 with a 3.57 ERA. He is 2-1 with a 3.52 ERA over five career starts against the Angels.Left-hander Andrew Heaney (9-9, 3.97 ERA) gets the starting nod for the Angels. He faced the Astros in consecutive starts to close August, twirling six shutout innings with six strikeouts in a 5-2 victory at Minute Maid Park on Aug. 30 after surrendering five runs on eight hits and one walk over six innings in a 9-3 loss six days earlier at Angel Stadium. Heaney is 3-1 with a 2.42 ERA over four starts against the Astros this season and 3-1 with a 1.95 ERA against Houston over six career starts.The Angels (75-78) suffered the worst loss in franchise history on Thursday, falling to the Athletics 21-3 and enabling Oakland to close to within 3 1/2 games of the Astros in the division. They have dropped five of seven games after winning seven of nine to climb back to .500.The lone interesting footnote for the Angels from their blowout loss to Oakland: Francisco Arcia became the first player in league history to catch, pitch, and homer in the same game. Arcia, who started the afternoon behind the plate, allowed three runs on four hits while pitching the seventh and eighth innings. He then slugged a solo home run, his sixth home run on the season, with two outs in the ninth inning off Athletics right-hander Chris Hatcher.

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