Kipnis in G1 lineup, feels ankle won't be issue

2nd baseman says photos of injury were from days ago

Kipnis in G1 lineup, feels ankle won't be issue

CLEVELAND -- The Indians have dealt with a freak drone-related injury, an ill-fated line drive and plenty of other unexpected health setbacks this season. An injury while celebrating just fits within the Tribe's strange script.

When photos emerged of Jason Kipnis' left ankle on Tuesday -- prior to Game 1 of the World Series against the Cubs -- there was reason to worry if the Indians' second baseman would be able to play. Those fears were calmed when Tribe manager Terry Francona started Kipnis at second base and in the lineup's second spot for the Fall Classic opener.

Kipnis went 0-for-5 in Cleveland's 6-0 series-opening win.

Game 2: Wednesday, 7 p.m. ET game time on FOX (6 p.m. ET pregame show on FS1)

Game Date Matchup Highlights
Gm 1 Oct. 25 CLE 6, CHC 0 video
Gm 2 Oct. 26 CHC 5, CLE 1 video
Gm 3 Oct. 28 CLE 1, CHC 0 video
Gm 4 Oct. 29 CLE 7, CHC 2 video
Gm 5 Oct. 30 CHC 3, CLE 2 video
Gm 6 Nov. 1 CHC 9, CLE 3 video
Gm 7 Nov. 2 CHC 8 CLE, 7 (10) video

"He ran last night," Francona said Tuesday. "I actually thought he ran better than I expected, and that's a situation where there's no people [in the stands]. I'm guessing that by the time 8 o'clock comes around, he'll be fine. He might be a half-step [slower than usual], but he'll be OK."

In the hours leading up to the start of the World Series, MLB Network's Heidi Watney tweeted a pair of photos of Kipnis' ankle, which looked extremely swollen in one picture and appeared badly bruised in the other. Kipnis said before Tuesday night's game that one photo was from last Wednesday after Cleveland clinched in Toronto, and the other was from a few days ago.

Shop for Indians World Series and AL champs gear

Kipnis sustained a low ankle sprain after the Indians punched their ticket to the World Series with a win over the Blue Jays in Game 5 of the American League Championship Series. After the game's final out, Kipnis sprinted over to shortstop Francisco Lindor and jumped to embrace his teammate. As Kipnis landed, he rolled his left ankle.

During Sunday's workout at Progressive Field, Kipnis worked through a variety of fielding exercises with trainers closely monitoring his movements. The second baseman then took batting practice during a simulated game thrown by right-hander Danny Salazar. On Monday, Cleveland had Kipnis go through some baserunning drills, and he got through the workout fine.

Tribe includes pitcher Salazar on WS roster

"I should be good," Kipnis said during Monday's media availability. "We're feeling good. We're progressing the way we had hoped. Right now, we're just getting out the swelling, getting range of motion back. If we can get it to where I can move around, the doctors have got stuff that can take pain away. I'll be all right."

Jordan Bastian has covered the Indians for MLB.com since 2011, and previously covered the Blue Jays from 2006-10. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.