Having won seven of 10 matchups between these American League Central rivals this year, the Indians will attempt to build upon that strong record in this evening's matchup with the White Sox from U.S. Cellular Field.
Cleveland continued its mastery of Chicago in Friday's opener of this three- game set, pounding out 15 hits en route to a 10-1 rout. Jhonny Peralta led the outburst by going 4-for-5 with four RBI, while Austin Kearns came through with three hits -- including a two-run homer -- to help Tribe starter Justin Masterson end a lengthy winless drought.
Masterson (1-5) did his part as well, holding the White Sox to one run on five hits while working around six walks over 5 2/3 innings. It was the right- hander's first victory since August 20, 2009, with Masterson having lost 11 straight decisions afterward.
"It's just nice to have this victory," Masterson said. "Things worked out well, and we'll just continue to work from here. It was a great team game today. It was nice to see an offensive explosion, and hopefully everyone can carry that momentum over."
Luis Valbuena had three hits and an RBI for Cleveland, which still sits at the bottom of the AL Central standings with a 20-33 record.
Former Indians star Omar Vizquel went 2-for-4 for Chicago, which was coming off a 4-3 triumph over AL West leader Texas on Thursday. Alexei Ramirez had a solo homer in a losing cause.
"It's happened to us all year long," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said of the team's inconsistencies. "We have a great game, then 24 hours later -- different ball club. Very different ball club."
White Sox starter John Danks (4-5) struggled in Friday's game, surrendering four runs and nine hits over 5 1/3 innings of work.
Chicago hopes for a better showing from Jake Peavy in tonight's tilt, although the 2007 National League Cy Young Award winner hasn't been that reliable as of late. Peavy has allowed five runs or more in each of his last three starts and recorded a brutal 8.83 earned run average over that stretch, with opponents batting a robust .356 against him.
Peavy was still able to get a win his last time out, despite permitting five runs and 10 hits in 5 1/3 innings of Chicago's 8-5 decision over Tampa Bay on Sunday. That came five days after the right-hander was rocked for six runs and served up a pair of homers over six frames in a loss to the Indians in Cleveland.
Much like his team, Peavy has had a very disappointing first two months of the season. The two-time All-Star comes into tonight's game with a 6.23 ERA and has given up 11 home runs in 69 1/3 innings pitched.
The 29-year-old, who'll be gunning for his 100th career victory tonight, is 1-2 with a 5.59 ERA in five career starts against Cleveland.
Rookie Mitch Talbot opposed Peavy in that May 25 encounter and will do so again tonight. The offseason acquisition was sharp in that contest, yielding just two runs on six hits through seven innings to pick up his team-leading sixth win of the season.
Talbot also defeated the White Sox back on April 16, firing a six hitter for his first career complete game in the Tribe's 6-2 verdict. The 26-year-old wasn't quite as effective in his last start, however, as he was reached for three runs on nine hits in 6 1/3 frames by the New York Yankees to receive a loss.