DETROIT -- Adjusting to a pure backup role has not been easy for catcher Lou Marson, but he knows that it's his job for the Indians and he understands that he needs to find a way to improve his performance within sporadic playing time.
"It was the first time that I haven't played that much," Marson said before Thursday's series finale against the Tigers. "It's an adjustment. That's probably how it's going to be. That's my role this year. I'm going to have to find a way, when I'm not playing consistently, to be successful when I do get in there.
"It is my role. I'm not saying I'm happy with it, but I've got to find a way to be successful."
Marson was Cleveland's backup catcher last season, but he received more chances to start due to Carlos Santana splitting his time between first base and catching.
Entering Thursday, Marson was riding a seven-game hitting streak in which he hit at a .400 (8-for-20) clip. That solid stretch began one day before Santana landed on the seven-day concussion disabled list on May 25. Marson was thrown back into the lineup regularly and his offense picked up as a result.
Santana has since returned to the lineup, forcing Marson back into backup duty.
"It got me some more consistent at-bats," said Marson, referring to Santana's stint on the DL. "When you can get those every day, I feel like you have a better idea of the strike zone and what you want to hit, having a plan. You go up and you have more consistent quality at-bats."
Stretches like that will be harder to find for Marson, who was hitting .213 through 20 games.
"It's hard for everybody, but there's nothing we can do," Indians manager Manny Acta said. "That's his job and he needs to just work at it and do whatever it takes to get ready. Our everyday guy is Santana. There's no way around that one."