Kipnis getting into groove after return from DL

Jason Kipnis has had a smooth return, helped by his teammates producing throughout the order.

KANSAS CITY — Jason Kipnis went into Wednesday’s game against Kansas City with an eight-game hitting streak and has raised his average to .250. Yet, he still feels like he is working his way back after spending nearly a month on the disabled list.

In the 12 games since coming off the DL, Kipnis has had a hit in all but three of them and is 13 for 46 with a double and seven RBI. His two-run double in the eighth inning on Tuesday was his first extra-base hit since coming off the DL.

"I’ve been swinging it OK. As long as they’re hits, I’ll take them," he said. "It’s all about getting your swing back. When you have a month off, you have to get ramped up again and fine tuned in a short amount of time."

The one thing that has helped Kipnis is that the rest of the lineup is producing. In the past 12 games, the Tribe is batting .299 and has gone 9-3. They have had 10 or more hits in seven straight games, which is their longest streak of double-digit hits since they had an eight-game stretch in September of 2005.

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"It has been beneficial for me because guys are doing so well and the team is playing so well. It has taken pressure off me and allowed me to get into a groove and help out where I can. I think if we were struggling I would look on myself to get a big hit. With the team being good, it has allowed me to get my timing back and get hits."

DAY OFF: Asdrubal Cabrera was not in the lineup on Wednesday as he was given the day off for the first time since May 24. Cabrera committed his 10th error on a force attempt that helped lead to a four-run inning by the Royals.

While the Indians would have got at least one out on the play, Francona said he doubted they could have had a double play with the speed that Jarrod Dyson has.

SHOWING FAITH: Carlos Santana is 6 for 17 since coming off the disabled list and has an on-base percentage of .476. He remains second in the American League in walks drawn with 47, which is one of the reasons why Francona kept him batting cleanup as long as he did.

"When you’re struggling you want to get three hits in one at-bat. I thought he fell into where he was taking longer swings and hit it harder but he was still taking his walks," Francona said.