Kipnis hits walk-off home run, Indians beat Royals 3-2

The Indians improve to 43-35 on the season

James Rapien
June 25, 2019 - 12:29 am
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CLEVELAND, Ohio – Jason Kipnis' resurgence continued on Monday night, as the veteran hit a walk-off home run to power the Indians past the Royals 3-2 in 10 innings. 

“It's an awesome feeling,” Kipnis said. “It never gets old. Getting a hit never gets old. Hitting a home run never gets old. To do it all as a walk-off, it's a thrill, it's a rush, to look back at all your teammates running out to home plate. It really is one of the better rushes in the game.”

The 32-year-old has been on fire since he tweaked his swing. Kipnis has posted a .471/.526/1.438 slash line with four home runs and 14 RBI in his last nine games. 

It was Kipnis' sixth career walk-off hit. He finished with three hits on the night, none more important than the last one, which gave Cleveland its' fourth win in a row. 

“Sometimes a guy will get the feel and it’s – like with Kip, I think it’s his hands,” manager Terry Francona said. “Sometimes he feels like his hands are kind of like underwater. That’s not what he says. But he has such good hitter’s hands, and when he feels good, he gets pretty dangerous.”

The game was delayed two hours and 23 minutes by rain following the top of the fourth inning. The delay forced both starting pitchers, Cleveland’s Adam Plutko and Kansas City’s Brad Keller out of the game.

Jose Ramirez got the Indians on the board with an RBI double in the fourth inning after play resumed. Carlos Santana scored to make it 1-1.

Bobby Bradley’s RBI double in the sixth inning gave the Tribe a 2-1 lead. He’s hit two doubles in his first two big league games. 

The Indians improve to 43-35 on the season. They've won nine of their last 11 games and are 7.5 games behind the Twins in the American League Central Division. 

"We're creating runs in different ways and I think if you add that to the pitching that's always been there, and the bullpen, it's a good recipe for wins," Kipnis said.

Vintage Jose – Ramirez had a big night for the Tribe. He finished 2-for-2 with two doubles, one RBI and a run scored. First, he ripped a double down the right field line in the second inning. Then, went the other way with a double down the left field line in the fourth inning. Ramirez is showing signs of life, which would be huge for the Indians.

“Guys who got off to slow starts, you knew they were going to start picking it up a little bit,” Kipnis said. “Especially if it all happens at the same time, kind of like it is right now with me and Jose a little bit. I thought Roberto and Frankie kind of carried us earlier, and now our lineup is lengthening, it's getting tougher."

Injury Update – Mike Clevinger went through an extensive workout on Sunday and the Indians expect him to start Friday’s game against the Orioles. He sprained his ankle on June 17 against the Rangers. Clevinger suffered a Teres major muscle strain in his back that kept him out for more than two months. He has a 2.70 ERA in three starts this season.

Outfielder Jake Bauers sprained his left ankle while shagging fly balls during batting practice. He was removed from the lineup, but isn't expected to miss extended time. Francona said the 23-year-old may miss a day or two as a precaution. 

Up Next – Shane Bieber is on the mound for the Tribe on Tuesday night. He enters with a 6-3 record and a 3.86 ERA on the season. Glenn Sparks will get the start for the Royals. He’s 2-3 on the season with a 3.62 ERA.