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Offensive firepower leads to 12-5 Tribe win over Royals; three takeaways

1. Kipnis bounces back

It’s no secret that Jason Kipnis has been struggling over the last month. Coming into Sunday’s contest, over the last 31 games he was slashing .190/.280/.267  in 118 plate appearances, per Jordan Bastian.

But “Dirtbag” was in a groove during this rubber match, going 4-for-5 from the plate, with four RBI, three runs scored and a stolen base.

In the fourth inning, Kipnis recorded an RBI single that gave Cleveland their first lead of the game, 2-1. In the top of the seventh, he hit an RBI double to put the Tribe up 8-4. The exclamation point on his day came in the top of the ninth inning, when Kipnis hit a two-run inside-the-park homer to give the Tribe a 12-5 lead. It was his 100th career home run and the second inside-the-park homer of his career (both of which have come at Kauffman Stadium).

As manager Terry Francona outlined prior to the game, the Indians are not considering moving Jose Ramirez over to second base for a myriad of reasons, most notably because he hasn’t practiced there all year and they are worried about the injury risk. As of right now, Kipnis isn’t going anywhere as far as the starting lineup is concerned– so the importance of him getting into some kind of groove before playoffs can’t be overstated.

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Ashley is a former basketball player who covers the Cleveland Cavaliers, Indians and high school sports for NEO Sports Insiders. She also covers the Cavs for SB Nation's Fear The Sword. Ashley is a 2015 graduate of John Carroll University and previously worked in political journalism. You can follow her on Twitter @AshleyBastock42

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