Smoke signals

Smoke signals

• The Indians' current starting nine includes seven left-handed hitters and two switch-hitters, which has led to teams throwing a lot of left-handed pitchers at the Tribe. Heading into Thursday, Cleveland's offense had an Major League-high 415 at-bats against lefties this season, but ranked 26th with a .222 average against southpaws.

• The Red Sox silenced their public-address microphone at Fenway Park for Thursday's game against the Indians in memory of Carl Beane, who died in a car crash Wednesday after suffering a heart attack. Beane, who was 59, served as the Fenway Park PA announcer since the 2003 season.

• Indians designated hitter Travis Hafner entered Thursday sporting the sixth-best road batting average (.371) in the American League. Second baseman Jason Kipnis ranked seventh in the AL with a .370 road average. Cleveland boasts a Major League-best 9-3 (.750 winning percentage) record on the road.