The rampaging Cleveland Indians posted one historical entry in the record books and can add another when they go for their 21st consecutive victory and a three-game sweep of the visiting Detroit Tigers on Wednesday afternoon. Cleveland matched Oakland (2002) for the longest winning streak in American League history with Tuesday’s 2-0 victory.
The Indians, who have not lost since Aug. 23 and own the AL’s best record, can match the Chicago Cubs (1935) for the second-longest run in major league annals after blanking the Tigers for a second straight game. Shortstop Francisco Lindor provided the only run necessary by leading off the first with his 30th homer — his third in four games and ninth during the team’s tear. Cleveland’s starters have combined for a dazzling 1.71 ERA during the record streak, including 18 scoreless innings from right-hander Mike Clevinger, who has allowed one run in beating Detroit three times this season and enters the series finale with a 15-inning scoreless streak against the Tigers. Buck Farmer takes the mound for Detroit, which has scored a total of five runs in losing all six matchups to the Indians in September.
TV: 12:10 p.m. ET, MLB Network, FSN Detroit, STO (Cleveland)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Tigers RH Buck Farmer (4-2, 6.32 ERA) vs. Indians RH Mike Clevinger (9-5, 3.30)
In his third start since his recall from Triple-A, Farmer picked up the victory at Toronto by allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits over five innings. He lasted only three innings against Cleveland in his previous turn and took the loss after giving up five runs on five hits. Jose Ramirez is hitless in six at-bats against Farmer, who is 0-3 in five appearances (three starts) versus Cleveland.
Although he started the season in the minors, Clevinger is a mainstay of the rotation as he tossed six scoreless innings for the third consecutive start to beat Baltimore last time out. He has yielded 10 hits during his three-start winning streak and has limited the Tigers to eight hits over 18 innings in the three matchups this season. Miguel Cabrera is 2-for-10 with a homer and five RBIs against Clevinger.
1. Cleveland has posted seven shutouts and yielded only 32 runs in the 20 straight wins.
2. Tigers RF Nicholas Castellanos is riding a nine-game hitting streak.
3. Lindor tied Jimmy Rollins (2007) and Jose Valentin (2004) for the most homers (30) in a season by a switch-hitting shortstop.
PREDICTION: Indians 6, Tigers 2