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Tribe keeping things in perspective after rocky start

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ANAHEIM -- No one needs to tell the Indians that they have experienced a disappointing April. The players within Cleveland's clubhouse are frustrated over the early results, but they are also trying to keep things in perspective at the moment.

The Tribe went through similar trials last season.

"When you think about it," Indians utility man Mike Aviles said, "we already know what we have here in this locker room. If you can tell, we're not really hitting the panic button."

Aviles was referring to the fact that -- through all the ups and downs that the Indians faced last year -- Cleveland finished 2013 as the American League's top Wild Card team. Last season, the Indians had five losing streaks of at least five games, suffered an eight-game losing streak in June and were below the .500 record as late as June 17.

Entering Wedesday, the Indians had dropped five in a row on their current road trip to slip to 11-16 on the season.

"I don't think we want to get to the point where we use that as an excuse or a crutch," said Corey Kluber, referring to leaning on last season's experience. "We want to play better baseball, but I think there is that to fall back on that. You know we had some rough spells last year and with a lot of the same group of guys and we can use those experiences, hopefully."

The Indians headed into Wednesday's action in last place in the AL Central, facing a 4 1/2-game deficit behind the first-place Tigers.

"There's just not that much baseball left. Making up 4 1/2 games is definitely going to be tough," Aviles joked. "No, the crazy part about it is, I don't know if anybody on the team itself has actually looked at the standings. When you think about it, there's so much that can go on. Five months of baseball is a lot. That's a lot of baseball. A lot of variables. A lot of things can happen.

"We're trying to win each game. It's just unfortunate that we've been in a little rut and we haven't been able to get things going in our favor. The best way to say it is as cold as you get, you can get just as hot."

Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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