CLEVELAND, OH - APRIL 11: Jack Hannahan #9 of the Cleveland Indians reacts after striking out during the fifth inning against the Chicago White Sox at Progressive Field on April 11, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Once again, the game was effectively over by the time the Indians came to the plate.
The weather was brutal with temperatures in the low 40s with a cold rain falling, so perhaps Masterson's troubles were related to the conditions; neither starter pitched particularly well, as John Danks left in the sixth inning having given up four runs on seven hits and five walks. The problem is that the White Sox took more advantage of their opportunities than the Indians did. The Indians left the bases loaded in the third inning, and couldn't take advantage of runners at second and third with one out in the fourth.
Those missed opportunities made a big difference, as the Indians would close within a run by the end of the fifth inning. If they had taken the lead, would Manny Acta have brought in Dan Wheeler in the sixth? I doubt it, especially because of the day off yesterday and a day off tomorrow. But Wheeler did enter the game, and he allowed a two-run homer to Alejandro de Aza; later in the inning, Rafael Perez gave up a three-run shot to put the game out of reach.
Despite leaving a number of potential runs on the bases, today was the Tribe's best offensive day of the season. Travis Hafner drove in three runs, one on a home run to the area formerly known as Pronkville, the other two on a double in the fifth to bring the Indians to within a run. Shelley Duncan had three hits, including a two-run homer in the seventh.
But even with those positives, the Indians dropped to 1-4 on the season, which is particularly painful since their first two series were at home.