Indians, Blue Jays gear up for getaway day doubleheader


The Cleveland Indians face the prospect of playing doubleheaders on two consecutive days after their game against the visiting Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday was postponed because of weather.

The game will be made up as part of a doubleheader on Sunday.

The Indians will also host a doubleheader against the Chicago White Sox on Monday as a result of an April 21 postponement because of cold weather.

The Blue Jays won the opener of the three-game series 11-2 on Friday in rainy, windy conditions. The game was called in the bottom of the seventh with Cleveland right fielder Josh Naylor at the plate.

“The wind was kind of blowing in a ton of different directions and depending on where it was hit in the field, it could either take off to the wall or shoot back in,” Naylor said. “It was a little risky, but playing until they tell you not to, I guess.”

Rookie left-hander Sam Hentges (1-1, 6.20) will start Game 1 on Sunday for Cleveland, while right-hander Aaron Civale (7-1, 3.04 ERA) will start Game 2.

Toronto will start right-hander Ross Stripling (0-3, 5.63) in Game 1 and left-hander Steven Matz (6-2, 4.28) in Game 2.

“When you play a doubleheader, you hope your starters give you six innings,” Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said on Saturday. “That way you only use two (pitchers) like we did in New York.”

The Blue Jays split a doubleheader against the New York Yankees on Thursday using one reliever in each game.

The Blue Jays have Monday off in the schedule before they move into their second temporary home of the season at Buffalo on Tuesday. They played their first 21 home games at Dunedin, Fla.

Stripling has one career relief appearance against Cleveland. When he was with the Los Angeles Dodgers, he allowed four runs and five hits in 1 2/3 innings on June 15, 2017.

Matz has faced Cleveland twice in his career, going 2-0, 0.68 with four walks and 16 strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings. He had a seven-inning scoreless outing April 17, 2016 in Cleveland when he was with the New York Mets.

Civale and Hentges will be making their first career appearances against Toronto.

Stripling had been pitching so poorly that his spot in the rotation was in jeopardy. The Blue Jays used an opener before his most recent outing last Monday. He responded by pitching seven scoreless innings, holding the Tampa Bay Rays to two hits in a no-decision.

Montoyo said that Stripling made an adjustment for that outing, but did not go into details. Stripling said after the outing that he had been tipping certain pitches and that he also had worked on some inconsistencies in his delivery.

“Because he’s been around, he knows,” Montoyo said. “He knows when to say, ‘OK, this isn’t working right now, I need to do something different.’ That’s why he did it. He’s been around, he’s a veteran and he knew he needed to make an adjustment.”

Indians manager Terry Francona will not be with the team Sunday so that he can attend the wedding of his youngest daughter Jamie in Newport, R.I.

“I’m wearing a tux,” said Francona, who has been slowed after offseason toe surgery. “I got a brand new boot and everything for the wedding.”

Bench coach DeMarlo Hale will fill in for Francona.

–Field Level Media

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