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Kipnis homers, but Perez struggles in loss
PEO View Full Game Coverage RIA, Ariz. -- In their final outings of the spring, Justin Masterson and Clayton Richard each turned in five innings of quality work on Thursday as the Padres downed the Indians, 6-4, thanks in large part to Will Venable's three RBIs.

Masterson, who will pitch against the Blue Jays on Opening Day, allowed two runs on six hits while striking out seven in his appearance. The right-hander finished his spring by giving up just three combined earned runs over his final 10 innings.

"It was good to have a Spring Training almost like the way you're supposed to have a Spring Training," Masterson said. "There were some struggles here and there, but each time I was getting a little bit better and a little bit better in order to build up for when you go."

"His fastball had life," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "That was really good. He got out to a point where he pitched enough, but not too much. And he had good life to his fastball. That was really encouraging. I think he feels good about himself. He should, because he's throwing the ball well. He's situated to go into the season. He should be feeling good about himself."

Richard, who will make his regular season debut April 3 against the Mets, surrendered three runs (one earned) on five hits while striking out six. His success on Thursday let the southpaw end his spring on a high note after he gave up a combined 10 earned runs on 16 hits in his previous two outings.

Venable put the Padres on top in the third inning with a sacrifice fly before the Indians responded in their next at-bat, taking the lead when Drew Stubbs drove home a pair on a single after an Everth Cabrera error.

Jason Kipnis added a solo home run in the fifth, his second of the spring, to extend Cleveland's advantage to 3-1.

Francona has also been pleased with the recent showing of Kipnis, who has hit just .170 on the spring, but has posted a .364 (4-for-11) average with four RBIs in his past three Cactus League games.

"He's worked hard at it," Francona said. "He wasn't feeling real good. He went down to a Minor League game [earlier this week] and got a lot of at-bats. He didn't feel particularly good doing it, but it paid off. He's starting to swing the bat."

After the Padres closed the gap to one in their half of the fifth, John Baker and Venable each smacked a two-run homer off Indians closer Chris Perez to give San Diego a three-run lead. Thursday was Perez's second appearance since returning from a shoulder strain that kept him sidelined for the majority of the spring.

Up next: Right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez will take the mound for the Indians on Friday for his final tune-up before the regular season. Jimenez (2-1, 4.62 ERA this spring) is lined up as Cleveland's No. 2 starter and will make his season debut on April 3 against the Blue Jays. For his final spring outing, Jimenez will log five innings in a 3:05 p.m. ET Cactus League contest against the Royals in Surprise, Ariz. Kansas City will counter with righty Jeremy Guthrie. The game will be on Gameday Audio, WTAM 1100-AM and across the Indians Radio Network.

Tyler Emerick is an associate reporter for

Cleveland Indians, Justin Masterson