Indians altering conditioning plan for Jason Kipnis

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Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis put up the worst full-season numbers of his brief major league career this past season, finishing with a .240/.310/.330 slash line with six home runs, 41 RBI, and 22 stolen bases in 555 plate appearances. He suffered from an oblique injury in April and a hamstring injury in September, but neither fully explained how far his numbers had fallen. In 2013, Kipnis finished with a .284/.366/.452 slash line with 17 home runs, 84 RBI, and 30 stolen bases in 658 plate appearances.

During the off-season going into 2014, Kipnis added some weight in attempt to add more power. The Indians now seem to think that it was a bad idea. Terry Pluto of The Plain Dealer reports that the club will alter the conditioning program for their second baseman so that he can cut some weight and hopefully add some speed back into his game. Perhaps Kipnis may even regain his power. Pluto adds that Kipnis was receptive to the Indians’ plan.

Kipnis, 27, will be entering the second year of a six-year, $52.5 million contract extension signed back in early April.

Brewers have 3 positive COVID tests at alternate site

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
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MILWAUKEE — The Brewers had two players and a staff member test positive for the coronavirus at their alternate training site in Appleton, Wisconsin.

Milwaukee president of baseball operations David Stearns confirmed the positive results Saturday and said they shouldn’t impact the major league team. Teams are using alternate training sites this season to keep reserve players sharp because the minor league season was canceled due to the pandemic.

Stearns said the positive tests came Monday and did not name the two players or the staff member. Players must give their permission for their names to be revealed after positive tests.

The entire camp was placed in quarantine.

“We have gone through contact tracing,” Stearns said. “We do not believe it will have any impact at all on our major league team. We’ve been fortunate to get through this season relatively unscathed in this area. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get all the way there at our alternate site.”

Milwaukee entered Saturday one game behind the Reds and Cardinals for second place in the NL Central, with the top two teams qualifying for the postseason.

The Brewers still will be able to take taxi squad players with them on the team’s trip to Cincinnati and St. Louis in the final week of the season. He said those players have had repeated negative tests and the team is “confident” there would be no possible spread of the virus.

“Because of the nature of who these individuals were, it’s really not going to affect the quarantine group at all,” Stearns said. “We’re very fortunate that the group of players who could potentially be on a postseason roster for us aren’t interacting all that much with the individuals that tested positive.”