OAKLAND -- A 4-17 stretch may have hurt the Indians' position in the standings, but it hasn't dampened the attitude in the clubhouse.
"I don't think anyone has packed it in," second baseman Jason Kipnis said. "I think we have a good amount of character. People are trying to win ballgames. We're not going to pack it up and look to get to the end of the season. Guys are still playing hard."
The Indians have spent 40 days in first place this season, and as recently as the All-Star break they were just three games out. But they stumbled out of the break and lost 11 in a row in late July and early August. And they took a four-game losing streak in Sunday's game against the A's.
"You just keep playing," third baseman Jack Hannahan said. "It's our job. We keep playing and showing up expecting to win. Just because we've gone young, it's no excuse to lose. You've got to come ready to play every day, and expect to win."
Brent Lillibridge has an interesting perspective. He began the season with the White Sox, who were in first place. Then he was traded to a Red Sox team that has underachieved. Then he came to the Indians in another trade, just before the 11-game losing streak.
"The guys here are great," Lillibridge said. "It's been frustrating because we've been losing, but we've been handling it really well. That makes you want to win more because you know how good it's going to be when we do start winning a little bit. Hopefully we can catch a little streak and play some great baseball."
Manager Manny Acta said it's no secret what the Indians need to turn things around.
"I think we need to pitch better," he said. "You can't win if you don't pitch better. It's that simple. That's the name of the game. Look across the field [at the A's]. What do you think got them where they are? We haven't played to our potential overall. That's all. Nothing inspires or sparks people more than winning games. And you win games by pitching."