All-Star hopeful Kipnis adjusts to rare day off

All-Star hopeful Kipnis adjusts to rare day off

All-Star hopeful Kipnis adjusts to rare day off
CLEVELAND -- Jason Kipnis isn't used to getting days off.

The Indians second baseman has been so good at the plate and in the field this season, he's only been out of the starting lineup one time. And even that day -- April 14 at Kansas City -- Kipnis entered in the third inning when third baseman Jack Hannahan was ejected.

So when manager Manny Acta kept Kipnis out of the lineup Wednesday in an effort to rest him for back-to-back days, Kipnis struggled to adjust to the change in routine. The Indians have a scheduled off-day on Thursday.

"I really have no idea what to do with myself right now," Kipnis said before Wednesday's game against the Reds. "They won't let me do anything. I tried to go do some cardio and they said, 'What are you doing in here?' I asked if I could take batting practice and they said to stay off the field. I'm trying not to get yelled at right now."

Kipnis bruised his knee on a play against the Tigers on the team's last road trip, and Acta said Wednesday's day off had been planned "a long time ago" with the team's medical staff. Jose Lopez started at second in place of Kipnis on Wednesday night.

The rest also comes at a good time because Kipnis has struggled recently at the plate. Entering Wednesday's game, he was just 7-for-33 in his last eight games.

"It's nice to get a break," Kipnis said. "It'll be good to just clear the head and get away from the diamond for a little bit."

Despite his recent struggles, Kipnis continues to be one of the Indians' best offensive performers. Entering Wednesday, Kipnis led the team in hits (75), home runs (11), RBIs (41), and games played (67).

Acta believes Kipnis deserves to be an All-Star. He was fourth among American League second basemen in the latest All-Star balloting results released earlier this week.

"Unfortunately we have some stud second basemen in the American League," Acta said. "[Ian] Kinsler and [Dustin] Pedroia and [Robinson] Cano -- that's a tough crowd. But without a doubt, [Kipnis] is an All-Star. He's played like one, his numbers indicate that, and I'd love to see him there."