04/02/12 4:01 PM ET
Tomlin goes five strong in Cactus League finale
Right-hander allows one run on three hits against Reds
By Jordan Bastian / MLB.com
Catcher Devin Mesoraco delivered the decisive blow in the eighth inning: a sacrifice fly against Indians reliever Dan Wheeler to plate the Reds' second run of the afternoon. That effectively sent the Tribe tripping to its 22nd loss of the spring.
The Reds (15-17-1) broke through for one run against Indians starter Josh Tomlin in the second inning, when Scott Rolen led off with a double to the wall in right field. Rolen advanced to third on a groundout by Jay Bruce and then scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Chris Heisey, giving Cincinnati a 1-0 lead
Tomlin, who will slide into the fourth spot in Cleveland's rotation, finished with 63 pitches (36 strikes) in five innings for the Indians (7-22-3). The right-hander was charged with one run on three hits and ended with two strikeouts and a pair of walks.
"He's ready to go," Indians manager Manny Acta said of Tomlin. "He threw all his pitches and was able to do it in his particular way, with only 63 pitches. That was gratifying to see, and we're coming out of Spring Training healthy. All of our guys are ready to go. Our bullpen is ready to go. We're all set."
Indians closer Chris Perez, who will be ready for Opening Day after working his way back from a strained left oblique earlier this spring, logged one inning in his final Cactus League appearance for the Indians.
In the fifth inning, Cleveland tied the score at 1-1. Third baseman Jack Hannahan led off with a single to center against Reds starter Bronson Arroyo. Tribe shortstop Jason Donald -- filling in for starter Asdrubal Cabrera -- followed with an RBI double that dropped into the gap in left-center.
Arroyo, who will enter the season third in Cincinnati's rotation, exited after turning in 6 1/3 innings for the Reds. The right-hander allowed just the one run on seven hits, mixing in four strikeouts with no walks.
"With all my stuff, I had command of it -- the mixture of pitches," Arroyo said. "It was a little more free and easy today. I didn't have to work so hard to feel like I was getting the ball to the plate. Hopefully that will continue."
Indians up next: With the Cactus League schedule complete, the Indians will travel to Zebulon, N.C., for a 2 p.m. ET exhibition contest against high-Class A Carolina, a new affiliate for the Tribe. Veteran sinkerballer Derek Lowe, who will enter the year as the No. 3 starter, is slated to start for the Indians. Left-handed pitching prospect Scott Barnes -- ticketed for Triple-A Columbus -- will get the nod for the Mudcats.