Texas-born righty Josh Tomlin returns from the disabled list amid a team slump today when the Cleveland Indians host the Kansas City Royals to open a three-game series at Progressive Field.
The Indians' lead in the American League Central was trimmed to a half-game over the Chicago White Sox after losing three straight over the weekend at U.S. Cellular Field.
Tomlin hasn't pitched since May 7, when he tossed 7 1/3 innings of two-run ball against the White Sox in a game Cleveland won, 3-2. He was shelved after the outing with a sore right wrist.
He's faced the Royals twice in six appearances so far in 2012, allowing four earned runs in a 3 2/3-inning relief stint on April 14 and giving up four more runs across 4 2/3 innings in a 4-2 loss in an April 26 start.
Overall against Kansas City, Tomlin is 4-2 in eight games with a 4.63 earned run average in 46 2/3 innings.
The Royals go with 24-year-old righty Nate Adcock, who faces the Indians for the third time in his 30th big-league outing.
The Kentucky native was drafted by the Seattle Mariners in 2006, went to Pittsburgh in a 2009 trade for Jack Wilson and Ian Snell and headed to Kansas City in the major leagues' rule 5 draft in 2010.
He debuted in the majors and made 24 appearances with the Royals last season, going 1-1 with a save and a 4.62 ERA across 60 1/3 innings.
Adcock's first four appearances of 2012 came out of the bullpen and saw him compile a 2.51 ERA in 14 1/3 innings, before a May 20 interleague start against Arizona saw him allow a run on five hits in five innings.
He got a tough-luck loss in a 2-0 defeat.
In two meetings with the Indians in 2011, he allow an earned run on four hits in 4 2/3 innings.
On Sunday in Baltimore, Jeff Francoeur belted a go-ahead solo shot in the sixth inning to lift the Royals to a 4-2 victory over the Orioles in the rubber match of a three-game series at Camden Yards.
Humberto Quintero added an RBI double in the sixth while Billy Butler smacked a solo shot in the first as the Royals took the final two games of the series.
Tim Collins (2-0) got the victory after recording the final out of the fifth in relief of starter Luke Hochevar, who allowed two runs - one earned - on seven hits with six strikeouts.
In Chicago, Paul Konerko went 2-for-4 with a three-run homer and drove in four to lead the White Sox to a 12-6 rout of the Indians.
Johnny Damon hit a three-run homer, while Michael Brantley had two hits and drove in a pair for the Indians, who were swept for the first time all season.
Ubaldo Jimenez (5-4) was pegged with the loss after giving up seven runs on seven hits over four-plus frames.
Cleveland has won four of six from the Royals this season.