Kipnis hadn't played this season after suffering a low-grade right calf strain late in spring training. He played just 10 games in spring training because of hip, quad and calf injuries and appeared in six games at Triple-A during his recently completed rehab assignment.
The Indians activated Kipnis off the 10-day injured list earlier Monday and in a separate move designated infielder Brad Miller for assignment. Miller hit .250 in 13 games for the Indians.
Entering his ninth MLB season, Kipnis has played his entire career with the Indians. He was an All-Star in 2013 and 2015, but he batted a career-worst .230 in 147 games last season.
In more good news for Cleveland on the injury front, shortstop Francisco Lindor was sent to Triple-A to begin a rehab assignment as the All-Star moves closer to rejoining the big league club after being slowed by a left ankle injury.
The switch-hitting Lindor was making steady progress from a right calf injury when he rolled his ankle while caught in a rundown during a minor league scrimmage in Arizona. Lindor batted .277 last season with 38 home runs, 92 RBIs and 25 steals.
Lindor hoped to play Monday with Columbus, but travel delays pushed his first game back to Tuesday. Cleveland manager Terry Francona didn't have a set number of games for Lindor to play before rejoining the Indians.
"It's going to depend on how he feels, and the last thing we want to do is slow him down,'' Francona said. "But we want to set him up for success. We want to make sure he's OK.''
The Associated Press contributed to this report.