Kipnis hits walk-off homer in 10th as Indians edge Royals

CLEVELAND (AP) Jason Kipnis spun as he approached home plate and deftly avoided being soaked with ice water by teammate Francisco Lindor.

Right now, Kipnis and the Indians are making all the right moves.

Kipnis homered leading off the 10th inning as Cleveland continued its impressive June with a 3-2 win over the Kansas City Royals on Monday night in a game delayed 2 hours, 23 minutes by rain.

Cleveland's second baseman connected on a 1-0 pitch from Wily Peralta (2-4), driving it into the right-field seats for his sixth homer - and first walk-off since September.

As the ball sailed into the nearly empty stands, Kipnis dropped his bat, circled the bases and pivoted near the plate to duck Lindor's attempt at a face-first Gatorade bath.

''It's an awesome feeling. It never gets old,'' Kipnis said. ''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 Indians have won four straight, nine of 11, 14 of 19 and are an AL-best 15-6 this month.

Kipnis has been a big part of Cleveland's early-summer surge. He's batting .471 with four homers and 14 RBIs in his past nine games, and the jump in his stats came after Kipnis noticed something about the positioning of his hands while watching video.

He's figured things out, and so have the Indians, who are a season-high eight games over .500.

Brad Hand (4-2) worked a perfect 10th as Indians manager Terry Francona was forced to use six pitchers because of the weather.

Indians rookie slugger Bobby Bradley, who delivered an RBI double in his first major league at-bat after being recalled from Triple-A Columbus on Sunday, put the Indians up in the sixth with a run-scoring double.

Whit Merrifield homered for the Royals, who sit at the bottom of the AL Central.

With the score tied 1-1 in sixth, Jose Ramirez walked with two outs before Bradley hit a liner that split center fielder Billy Hamilton and right fielder Merrifield, who cut the ball off with a soggy, sliding stop near the warning track.

But Kansas City's relay was not in time to get Ramirez, and Bradley, who was leading the International League in homers, celebrated at second by raising his arms and motioning toward his teammates in the dugout.

Blanked for three innings before the rain stoppage by Royals starter Brad Keller, the Indians tied it 1-all shortly after play resumed on back-to-back doubles by Santana and Ramirez, who is again showing signs of emerging from a baffling batting slump.

Ramirez has hiked his average up to .217, a season-high but 100 points before his .317 clip in 2017.

''Jose looks like he's starting to feel a little more like Jose,'' Indians manager Terry Francona said.

Indians starter Adam Plutko didn't give up a hit until the fourth, when Whit Merrifield led off with his 11th homer, a shot to left that barely crept over the 19-foot-high wall. Plutko got through the rest of the inning unscathed before the rain intensified and caused the lengthy delay.

''Just a good pitched game on both sides,'' Royals manager Ned Yost said. ''It's too bad because (RHP Brad) Keller was really sharp. It's too bad we couldn't have lengthened him out with the stuff he had tonight.''

BAUERS HURT

Indians outfielder Jake Bauers was scratched from the starting lineup after he rolled his left ankle shagging flies in batting practice. Francona said Bauers may get another days' rest.

''I don't know if he'll play tomorrow,'' Francona said. ''If he can play tomorrow he will. I think we all thought it was really bad when it happened. He was laying out there. He's gonna be OK.''

TO WHIT

Merrifield became the first major leaguer to reach 100 hits this season, going 2 for 5. He led the majors with 192 hits in 2018. Over his last 13 games, Merrifield is batting .351 with five doubles, four homers and 13 runs.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Royals: 2B Adalberto Mondesi (right groin strain) is expected to come off the 10-day injured list when eligible on June 29. He was put on the shelf following Kansas City's June 18 game in Seattle.

Indians: RHP Mike Clevinger will throw a ''full-fledged bullpen'' Tuesday, a final hurdle before he's activated from the injured list with a sprained ankle. Clevinger is scheduled to start Friday at Baltimore.

UP NEXT

Royals: RHP Glenn Sparkman (2-3, 3.62 ERA) allowed one run - a homer - and tossed a career-high seven innings in his previous start against Minnesota.

Indians: RHP Shane Bieber (6-3, 3.86 ERA) has won both career starts against Kansas City despite a 6.35 ERA. He's 8-2 in 14 starts against AL Central opponents.

---

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Copyright 2019 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

2345678910RHE
KC27-52
001000100250
CLE43-35
0010100013100
  • W: B. Hand (4-2)L: W. Peralta (2-4)
  • HR: KC - W. Merrifield (11), CLE - J. Kipnis (6)
PLAYERS OF THE GAME
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
W. Merrifield RF51211001.303.350.506.8567.0
N. Lopez 2B40110011.241.281.324.6052.5
A. Gordon LF30000121.261.342.449.7910.0
H. Dozier 3B40000002.305.391.580.9710.0
J. Soler DH30000000.239.306.512.8181.0
C. Cuthbert 1B30100111.299.330.494.8241.5
H. Arteaga SS40000012.125.176.125.301-0.5
M. Maldonado C30100001.214.286.311.5972.0
T. Gore PR01000000.271.340.333.6731.0
C. Gallagher C10000010.171.229.197.426-0.5
B. Hamilton CF40000021.223.297.274.571-1.0
    HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
    F. Lindor SS50100011.289.352.498.8500.5
    O. Mercado CF50100003.305.359.473.8321.0
    C. Santana 1B51100003.291.413.538.9513.0
    J. Kipnis 2B51311011.248.305.387.6927.5
    J. Ramirez 3B21210200.217.308.332.6408.0
    B. Bradley DH30110124.333.500.6671.1673.0
    R. Perez C40000037.236.328.483.811-1.5
    T. Naquin RF40100004.267.296.422.7181.0
    M. Freeman LF20000020.258.373.355.728-1.0
    a- J. Luplow PH-LF00000100.252.325.511.8361.0
    • a-walked for Freeman in the 9th
    BATTING
    • 2B - N. Lopez (7), M. Maldonado (10)
    • HR - W. Merrifield (11)
    • RBI - W. Merrifield (40), N. Lopez (7)
    • 2-Out RBI - N. Lopez (3)
    • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - H. Dozier (25), M. Maldonado (20)
    BATTING
    • 2B - C. Santana (15), J. Ramirez 2 (14), B. Bradley (2)
    • HR - J. Kipnis (6)
    • SH - M. Freeman (3)
    • RBI - J. Kipnis (29), J. Ramirez (30), B. Bradley (2)
    • 2-Out RBI - B. Bradley
    • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - O. Mercado (14), C. Santana (29), R. Perez 2 (15), T. Naquin 3 (15)
    FIELDING
    • DP - (Arteaga-Cuthbert)
    FIELDING
    • DP - (Ramirez-Kipnis-Santana)
    PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
    B. Keller3.03000404.321.398.0
    B. Flynn3.24222302.081.332.5
    J. Lopez1.11001206.301.512.0
    J. Diekman1.01001005.061.311.0
    W. Peralta (L, 2-4)0.01110014.911.52-7.0
    PITCHERSIP
    B. Keller3.0
    B. Flynn3.2
    J. Lopez1.1
    J. Diekman1.0
    W. Peralta (L, 2-4)0.0
    PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
    A. Plutko4.01110314.261.0111.5
    A. Cole1.11001103.451.401.5
    T. Olson0.20000104.031.570.5
    T. Clippard (H, 2)1.01000002.910.832.0
    N. Wittgren (BS, 2)2.02111202.760.993.0
    B. Hand (W, 4-2)1.00000101.050.7910.5
    PITCHERSIP
    A. Plutko4.0
    A. Cole1.1
    T. Olson0.2
    T. Clippard (H, 2)1.0
    N. Wittgren (BS, 2)2.0
    B. Hand (W, 4-2)1.0
    PITCHING
    • Pitches-Strikes - B. Keller 40-26, B. Flynn 63-37, J. Lopez 31-15, J. Diekman 17-8, W. Peralta 2-1
    • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - B. Keller 5-0, B. Flynn 6-2, J. Lopez 3-0, J. Diekman 3-0, W. Peralta 0-1
    • Batters Faced - B. Keller 11, B. Flynn 17, J. Lopez 6, J. Diekman 5, W. Peralta
    PITCHING
    • Pitches-Strikes - A. Plutko 34-24, A. Cole 25-17, T. Olson 14-10, T. Clippard 15-8, N. Wittgren 32-20, B. Hand 10-7
    • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - A. Plutko 3-4, A. Cole 3-0, T. Olson 0-1, T. Clippard 2-0, N. Wittgren 3-1, B. Hand 0-1
    • Batters Faced - A. Plutko 13, A. Cole 6, T. Olson 2, T. Clippard 4, N. Wittgren 9, B. Hand 3
    PLAYERS OF THE GAME
    2345678910RHE
    KC27-52
    001000100250
    CLE43-35
    0010100013100
    HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
    W. Merrifield RF51211001.303.350.506.8567.0
    N. Lopez 2B40110011.241.281.324.6052.5
    A. Gordon LF30000121.261.342.449.7910.0
    H. Dozier 3B40000002.305.391.580.9710.0
    J. Soler DH30000000.239.306.512.8181.0
    C. Cuthbert 1B30100111.299.330.494.8241.5
    H. Arteaga SS40000012.125.176.125.301-0.5
    M. Maldonado C30100001.214.286.311.5972.0
    T. Gore PR01000000.271.340.333.6731.0
    C. Gallagher C10000010.171.229.197.426-0.5
    B. Hamilton CF40000021.223.297.274.571-1.0
    Total3425212810-----
      HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
      F. Lindor SS50100011.289.352.498.8500.5
      O. Mercado CF50100003.305.359.473.8321.0
      C. Santana 1B51100003.291.413.538.9513.0
      J. Kipnis 2B51311011.248.305.387.6927.5
      J. Ramirez 3B21210200.217.308.332.6408.0
      B. Bradley DH30110124.333.500.6671.1673.0
      R. Perez C40000037.236.328.483.811-1.5
      T. Naquin RF40100004.267.296.422.7181.0
      M. Freeman LF20000020.258.373.355.728-1.0
      a- J. Luplow PH-LF00000100.252.325.511.8361.0
      Total35310314923-----
      • a-walked for Freeman in the 9th
      BATTING
      • 2B - N. Lopez (7), M. Maldonado (10)
      • HR - W. Merrifield (11)
      • RBI - W. Merrifield (40), N. Lopez (7)
      • 2-Out RBI - N. Lopez (3)
      • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - H. Dozier (25), M. Maldonado (20)
      BATTING
      • 2B - C. Santana (15), J. Ramirez 2 (14), B. Bradley (2)
      • HR - J. Kipnis (6)
      • SH - M. Freeman (3)
      • RBI - J. Kipnis (29), J. Ramirez (30), B. Bradley (2)
      • 2-Out RBI - B. Bradley
      • Runners left in scoring position, 2-Out - O. Mercado (14), C. Santana (29), R. Perez 2 (15), T. Naquin 3 (15)
      FIELDING
      • DP - (Arteaga-Cuthbert)
      FIELDING
      • DP - (Ramirez-Kipnis-Santana)
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      B. Keller3.03000404.321.398.0
      B. Flynn3.24222302.081.332.5
      J. Lopez1.11001206.301.512.0
      J. Diekman1.01001005.061.311.0
      W. Peralta (L, 2-4)0.01110014.911.52-7.0
      Total9.01033491---
      PITCHERSIP
      B. Keller3.0
      B. Flynn3.2
      J. Lopez1.1
      J. Diekman1.0
      W. Peralta (L, 2-4)0.0
      Total9.0
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      A. Plutko4.01110314.261.0111.5
      A. Cole1.11001103.451.401.5
      T. Olson0.20000104.031.570.5
      T. Clippard (H, 2)1.01000002.910.832.0
      N. Wittgren (BS, 2)2.02111202.760.993.0
      B. Hand (W, 4-2)1.00000101.050.7910.5
      Total10.0522281---
      PITCHERSIP
      A. Plutko4.0
      A. Cole1.1
      T. Olson0.2
      T. Clippard (H, 2)1.0
      N. Wittgren (BS, 2)2.0
      B. Hand (W, 4-2)1.0
      Total10.0
      PITCHING
      • Pitches-Strikes - B. Keller 40-26, B. Flynn 63-37, J. Lopez 31-15, J. Diekman 17-8, W. Peralta 2-1
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - B. Keller 5-0, B. Flynn 6-2, J. Lopez 3-0, J. Diekman 3-0, W. Peralta 0-1
      • Batters Faced - B. Keller 11, B. Flynn 17, J. Lopez 6, J. Diekman 5, W. Peralta
      PITCHING
      • Pitches-Strikes - A. Plutko 34-24, A. Cole 25-17, T. Olson 14-10, T. Clippard 15-8, N. Wittgren 32-20, B. Hand 10-7
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - A. Plutko 3-4, A. Cole 3-0, T. Olson 0-1, T. Clippard 2-0, N. Wittgren 3-1, B. Hand 0-1
      • Batters Faced - A. Plutko 13, A. Cole 6, T. Olson 2, T. Clippard 4, N. Wittgren 9, B. Hand 3
      • 10TH INNING
        Kipnis homered to right23
      • 8TH INNING
        Lopez doubled to left, Gore scored22
      • 6TH INNING
        Bradley doubled to right center, Ramirez scored12
      • 4TH INNING
        Ramirez doubled to deep left, Santana scored11
        Merrifield homered to center10
      • 10TH INNING
        • Brad Hand relieved Nick Wittgren
        • C. Gallagher: Strike looking, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Gallagher struck out swinging
        • B. Hamilton: Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul, Hamilton popped out to first
        • W. Merrifield: Ball, Merrifield flied out to right
        • Middle of the 10th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • Wily Peralta relieved Jake Diekman
        • J. Kipnis: Ball, Kipnis homered to right
      • 9TH INNING
        • N. Wittgren Pitching:
        • J. Soler: Soler flied out to right
        • C. Cuthbert: Strike looking, Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Strike looking, Cuthbert struck out looking
        • H. Arteaga: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Arteaga grounded out to second
        • Middle of the 9th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • Jake Diekman relieved Jorge Lopez
        • T. Naquin: Strike swinging, Ball, Strike swinging, Naquin lined out to right
        • Jordan Luplow hit for Mike Freeman
        • J. Luplow: Ball, Foul, Ball, Ball, Ball, Luplow walked
        • F. Lindor: Lindor reached on an infield single to third, Luplow to second
        • O. Mercado: Ball, Mercado reached on fielder's choice to shortstop, Luplow to third, Lindor out at second
        • C. Santana: Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Santana grounded out to third
        • End of the 9th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 8TH INNING
        • Nick Wittgren relieved Tyler Clippard
        • M. Maldonado: Foul, Maldonado doubled to left center
        • B. Hamilton: Foul, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Ball, Foul tip, Hamilton struck out on foul tip
        • Terrance Gore ran for Martin Maldonado
        • W. Merrifield: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Merrifield grounded out to third
        • N. Lopez: Foul, Ball, Foul, Lopez doubled to left, Gore scored
        • A. Gordon: Gordon intentionally walked
        • H. Dozier: Strike looking, Ball, Dozier lined out to right
        • Middle of the 8th (1 Run, 2 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • Cam Gallagher catching
        • C. Santana: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Santana grounded out to first
        • J. Kipnis: Foul, Foul, Foul, Ball, Ball, Ball, Kipnis singled to left center
        • J. Ramirez: Ball, Ball, Ball, Ball, Ramirez walked, Kipnis to second
        • B. Bradley: Foul, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul tip, Bradley struck out on foul tip
        • R. Perez: Ball, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Perez struck out swinging
        • End of the 8th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 7TH INNING
        • Tyler Clippard relieved Tyler Olson
        • H. Dozier: Ball, Ball, Dozier grounded out to third
        • J. Soler: Strike looking, Soler fouled out to catcher
        • C. Cuthbert: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Cuthbert singled to right
        • H. Arteaga: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Arteaga grounded out to shortstop
        • Middle of the 7th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
        • B. Flynn Pitching:
        • T. Naquin: Strike looking, Ball, Strike swinging, Naquin singled to right center
        • M. Freeman: Freeman hit sacrifice bunt to first, Naquin to second
        • F. Lindor: Ball, Lindor flied out to right
        • Jorge Lopez relieved Brian Flynn
        • O. Mercado: Ball, Mercado grounded out to shortstop
        • End of the 7th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 6TH INNING
        • A. Cole Pitching:
        • B. Hamilton: Strike looking, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Hamilton struck out swinging
        • W. Merrifield: Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Merrifield singled to left
        • Tyler Olson relieved A.J. Cole
        • N. Lopez: Strike looking, Ball, Strike (foul tip), Foul, Ball, Foul, Pickoff attempt, Foul, Lopez flied out to center
        • A. Gordon: Foul, Ball, Ball, Pickoff attempt, Foul, Foul, Strike swinging, Gordon struck out swinging
        • Middle of the 6th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
        • B. Flynn Pitching:
        • C. Santana: Santana grounded out to second
        • J. Kipnis: Ball, Ball, Kipnis grounded out to second
        • J. Ramirez: Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Foul, Foul, Ball, Ball, Ramirez walked
        • B. Bradley: Pickoff attempt, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Strike swinging, Strike looking, Bradley doubled to right center, Ramirez scored
        • R. Perez: Ball, Foul, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Perez grounded out to first
        • End of the 6th (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 5TH INNING
        • A.J. Cole relieved Adam Plutko
        • J. Soler: Strike looking, Soler grounded out to shortstop
        • C. Cuthbert: Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Cuthbert walked
        • H. Arteaga: Strike looking, Foul, Foul, Arteaga grounded out to catcher, Cuthbert to second
        • M. Maldonado: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Maldonado grounded out to pitcher
        • Middle of the 5th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • B. Flynn Pitching:
        • M. Freeman: Strike looking, Ball, Strike looking, Strike looking, Freeman struck out looking
        • F. Lindor: Strike swinging, Lindor grounded out to second
        • O. Mercado: Foul, Ball, Ball, Foul, Ball, Foul, Foul, Mercado flied out to center
        • End of the 5th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 4TH INNING
        • A. Plutko Pitching:
        • W. Merrifield: Ball, Merrifield homered to center
        • N. Lopez: Strike looking, Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Strike looking, Lopez struck out looking
        • A. Gordon: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Ball, Strike looking, Gordon struck out looking
        • H. Dozier: Dozier lined out to center
        • Middle of the 4th (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
        • Brian Flynn relieved Brad Keller
        • C. Santana: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Santana doubled to deep left
        • J. Kipnis: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Kipnis struck out swinging
        • J. Ramirez: Ramirez doubled to deep left, Santana scored
        • B. Bradley: Ball, Ball, Foul, Ball, Ball, Bradley walked
        • R. Perez: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Perez struck out swinging
        • T. Naquin: Naquin reached on fielder's choice to shortstop, Bradley out at second
        • End of the 4th (1 Run, 2 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 3RD INNING
        • A. Plutko Pitching:
        • H. Arteaga: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Arteaga struck out swinging
        • M. Maldonado: Ball, Maldonado grounded out to third
        • B. Hamilton: Hamilton flied out to left
        • Middle of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • B. Keller Pitching:
        • M. Freeman: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Foul tip, Freeman struck out on foul tip
        • F. Lindor: Strike looking, Ball, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Lindor struck out swinging
        • O. Mercado: Ball, Mercado lined out to right
        • End of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 2ND INNING
        • A. Plutko Pitching:
        • H. Dozier: Strike looking, Ball, Dozier popped out to second
        • J. Soler: Ball, Foul, Ball, Soler hit by pitch
        • C. Cuthbert: Cuthbert grounded into double play third to second to first, Soler out at second
        • Middle of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • B. Keller Pitching:
        • J. Kipnis: Ball, Foul, Strike looking, Ball, Kipnis singled to center
        • J. Ramirez: Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Ramirez doubled to right, Kipnis to third
        • B. Bradley: Foul, Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Bradley struck out swinging
        • R. Perez: Foul, Ball, Foul, Foul, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Perez struck out swinging
        • T. Naquin: Ball, Naquin grounded out to first
        • End of the 2nd (0 Runs, 2 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 1ST INNING
        • A. Plutko Pitching:
        • W. Merrifield: Strike looking, Ball, Merrifield grounded out to shortstop
        • N. Lopez: Foul, Foul, Ball, Lopez flied out to left
        • A. Gordon: Gordon flied out to deep right
        • Middle of the 1st (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • B. Keller Pitching:
        • F. Lindor: Ball, Ball, Lindor grounded out to second
        • O. Mercado: Foul, Mercado reached on an infield single to shortstop
        • C. Santana: Ball, Santana grounded into double play shortstop to first, Mercado out at second
        • End of the 1st (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)