Indians 7, Twins 2

The Cleveland Indians have shown the ability to bounce back from

difficult losses all season. They did it again Saturday night.

Carlos Santana and Jason Kipnis hit two-run homers, Zach

McAllister won his third straight start and the Indians defeated

the Minnesota Twins 7-2.

The win moved the Indians into third place in the crowded

American League wild card race. It also came a night after they

were flat in Friday’s 5-1 loss in which they managed only six

singles.

”We needed a nice little offensive day like this,” said

Kipnis, who had two hits after entering the game in an 0 for 19

slump. ”The pitchers have been doing their jobs. We know the

offense has been struggling a little bit so this was a good night

for us to have.”

Santana’s two-run homer in the first got the Indians started.

Kipnis homered in the third and Cleveland put the game away with a

three-run fifth, which gave McAllister a comfortable cushion.

”It’s a good way to play,” Indians manager Terry Francona

said.

The Indians are 2 1/2 games out of the second wild card spot and

trail Detroit by six games in the AL Central, but Kipnis isn’t

placing any special significance on an individual game.

”That would be counter productive to look at it that way,” he

said. ”If you get caught up scoreboard watching, it can’t really

help you out too much.”

McAllister (7-7) allowed two runs in 7 1-3 innings. Brian Dozier

homered in the eighth and hit a sacrifice fly in the third for

Minnesota’s only success against the right-hander, who has given up

four earned runs in 19 2-3 innings in his winning streak.

Nick Swisher added a two-run double in the fifth for Cleveland,

which won for only the second time in its last nine home games.

Both home runs came off starter Liam Hendriks (0-2), who has

lost 12 of his 13 career decisions.

Kipnis reached in the first on a two-out single and scored when

Santana homered to right. Kipnis’ homer bounced off the roof of

Minnesota’s bullpen in right field, his first home run since July

21. Santana and Kipnis are tied for the team lead with 16

homers.

Kipnis, who failed to get a bunt down and then struck out with

two runners on in a crucial situation Friday, was relieved to break

out of his slump.

”I wanted to take the base and hold it up,” he said. ”It’s a

long season. Welcome to the game of baseball, where you’re feeling

great one day and the next day you don’t know how to hold your

hands up at the plate.”

Several Cleveland hitters have been struggling, including

Michael Brantley, who broke an 0 for 22 slump with an RBI single in

the fifth.

Hendriks, who was recalled from Triple-A Rochester to make the

start, recorded his only career win at Progressive Field last

season. The right-hander, a native of Australia, didn’t get the

same results this time, allowing seven runs in 4 1-3 innings.

The Twins, who were 14-7 against the Indians since last

September going into the game, couldn’t muster anything else

against McAllister, who missed seven weeks earlier in the season

because of a sprained middle finger on his pitching hand. He

allowed two runs with seven strikeouts in six innings of a 5-2 win

at Minnesota on Aug. 13.

”I was able to make some adjustments during the time off with

my delivery,” McAllister said. ”I feel a little bit more

comfortable.”

Hendriks was recalled to take the rotation spot of the

ineffective Kyle Gibson, who was sent to Rochester earlier in the

week. Hendriks’ only career win came against the Indians on Sept.

19 of last season when he allowed two runs in six innings in a 6-4

victory. That win snapped a string of 17 starts without a victory,

the third-longest streak to begin a career in history.

Asked about his 1-12 career record Hendriks said, ”It’s

irritating, but I don’t let it affect me. I got ahead of guys

tonight, but I couldn’t throw a strike in the right location. My

secondary pitchers just weren’t working.”

The Twins announced before the game that catcher Joe Mauer, who

was placed on the concussion list Tuesday, has been told by doctors

to rest until early next week.

NOTES: Twins OF Oswaldo Arcia (left wrist) returned to action

missing four games with a bone bruise and was 0 for 4. … Francona

said an MRI on OF Ryan Raburn’s sore right calf came back clean.

Raburn is also bothered by a sore left heel, which according to

Francona, came as a result from favoring the right leg. The Indians

hope Raburn will be available by Tuesday. … RHP Corey Kluber

(sprained right middle finger) is scheduled to throw a bullpen

session Monday. … The Twins optioned RHP Michael Tonkin to

Triple-A Rochester to make room for Hendriks on their 25-man

roster. Tonkin made two relief appearances for Minnesota, pitching

2 1-3 innings without allowing an earned run. … Indians LHP Scott

Kazmir (7-6) takes on Twins RHP Mike Pelfrey (5-10) in the

three-game series finale Sunday. Kazmir was originally slated to

pitch Saturday, but was given an additional day between starts.