Kipnis homers as Indians beat Padres in twinbill opener
Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Zach McAllister pitched into the eighth inning and Jason Kipnis backed the Cleveland right-hander with a two-run homer as the Indians blanked San Diego, 2-0, in the first game of Wednesday's interleague doubleheader at Progressive Field.
McAllister (1-0) was solid on the mound, scattering five hits and recording seven strikeouts with no walks. He ran into trouble in the eighth, allowing back-to-back singles after retiring the first two batters.
"I was able to get ahead of hitters, and they were aggressive," McAllister said. "If you get ahead and you're able to mix a little bit, it definitely helps out."
Cody Allen relieved McAllister and struck out Seth Smith looking to preserve a lead the Indians grabbed on Kipnis' sixth-inning blast off San Diego starter Eric Stults (0-2).
The Padres mounted a threat in the ninth against Cleveland closer John Axford, as Yonder Alonso lined a leadoff single and Jedd Gyorko drew a one-out walk. The runners then moved up on a wild pitch, but Axford earned his fourth save by striking out Will Venable and getting Xavier Nady to fly out to right field.
Stults sidestepped a bases-loaded jam in the second and matched zeros with McAllister through five innings.
Kipnis broke the scoreless tie with his first home run of the season.
"I left a pitch up, and he did what good hitters do," Stults said of the Kipnis home run.
Third baseman Alexi Amarista made a low throw to first on a Nick Swisher grounder with one out in the sixth and Kipnis followed with a drive to right-center field. Venable leaped at the wall, but the ball was just beyond his reach.
Stults then walked Carlos Santana and gave up a Ryan Raburn double before concluding his outing with a strikeout of Michael Brantley. Nick Vincent fanned Yan Gomes to end the inning.
Rain postponed Monday's opener of this three-game series ... McAllister finished one strikeout shy of equaling his career high ... The Padres were 0- for-8 with runners in scoring position ... Stults allowed five hits and walked two.
04/09 23:55:10 ET