Kluber, Samardzija square off in Windy City finale

(SportsNetwork.com) – Reigning American League Cy Young Award winner Corey
Kluber takes another shot at his first win of the season on Wednesday when the
Cleveland Indians close out a three-game set with the Chicago White Sox at
U.S. Cellular Field.

Kluber suffered a hard-luck defeat on Opening Day, but hasn’t picked up a win
in either of his two starts that followed, despite giving up no more than two
runs in either outing. The righty retired the first 15 batters he faced and
went eight innings in Minnesota on Friday, as he surrendered a pair of runs
and three hits in eight frames of his team’s 3-2 loss.

He also struck out eight and has fanned 25 batters in 21 2/3 innings this
season. Kluber is also pitching to a 2.49 ERA, but the Tribe is 0-3 in his
three outings.

“He threw a great game,” Indians outfielder Brandon Moss said of Kluber. “He’s
thrown several great games already.”

The only other starting pitcher in team history to give up two runs or less in
three straight starts with no wins to show for it was Sam McDowell, who did it
in 1965 and 1966.

“Any time you pitch and you don’t get a win, it’s disappointing,” Kluber said.
“That being said, it’s part of it. There’s numerous games throughout a year
where the offense does really well and the pitching struggles, or vice versa.
It’s just part of it.

“I think I’m doing a good job of pounding the zone and making quality pitches.
I think the results have been pretty good to show that.”

Chicago, meanwhile, will turn to righty Jeff Samardzija, who is also looking
for his first win of the season. Samardzija had his best outing since
becoming a member of the White Sox on Friday in Detroit, but settled for a
no-decision, as he allowed a run and eight hits in eight innings. He also
struck out seven batters without issuing a walk in his team’s 2-1 loss.

Samardzija is 0-1 on the year with a 4.29 ERA.

On Tuesday, Carlos Santana and David Murphy homered to support a strong return
start from Carlos Carrasco in Cleveland’s 6-2 victory.

Taking the mound one week after being struck in the jaw by Melky Cabrera’s
line drive in the opening inning of an eventual losing decision to the White
Sox, Carrasco (2-1) struck out eight while yielding just one run — a Jose
Abreu solo homer — over five successful innings.

Ryan Raburn contributed two hits — including a pinch-hit, two-run single —
to the win, while Michael Brantley went 2-for-4 with an RBI to help Cleveland
rebound from a ninth-inning collapse that resulted in a 4-3 setback in
Monday’s opener.

Abreu added an RBI single for the White Sox, but prized pitching prospect
Carlos Rodon turned in a dud in his major league debut.

Rodon, the No. 3 overall pick in last year’s MLB Draft who was called up from
Triple-A Charlotte Monday, walked three and surrendered two runs in 2 1/3
innings in relief of Hector Noesi.

Noesi (0-2) was charged with four runs and served up both Cleveland homers
over 5 2/3 innings of work.

These teams split a two-game set last week, but Cleveland took 10 of
19 from the White Sox a season ago.