1Seven significant pitches
Of course, Alcides Escobar swung at the first pitch from Marcus Stroman. He didn’t make contact but did with the second, lining a ball that got past right fielder Jose Bautista, who played it poorly. Escobar sped to third and scored on the next pitch when Ben Zobrist grounded out to second. Lorenzo Cain hit a laser to the wall in center, but Kevin Pillar made a sensational catch. Eric Hosmer grounded out and, whew, all that happened on just seven pitches. Johnny Cueto issued a two-out walk to Bautista, then struck out Edwin Encarnacion.
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2Blue Jays pull ahead
The Royals got two singles (Kendrys Morales leading off and Alex Gordon with two outs), but Alex Rios flied out to right. Troy Tulowitzki had a one-out single for Toronto and Russell Martin was hit by a pitch. Pillar grounded into a fielder’s choice, barely avoiding a double play, and then stole second. Ryan Goins lined a single to left that scored Tulowitzki and Pillar, who made a nice slide to avoid a tag at the plate. Ben Revere walked, and Josh Donaldson singled past Mike Moustakas at third and Goins scored.
3Cueto’s short night
Zobrist doubled with one out and took third on Cain’s infield single. Hosmer grounded to first and Cain was forced out, but Hosmer avoided the double play with a head-first slide into first as Zobrist scored. The Blue Jays then knocked out Cueto. Encarnacion singled, Chris Colabello walked and Tulowitzki hit a three-run homer over the center-field wall. Martin followed with a walk and scored on Pillar’s double. Kris Medlen entered, got a couple of outs and then allowed a homer to Donaldson.
4Take a breath...
The Royals went down in order, and the Blue Jays got a leadoff single from Encarnacion, but Colabello hit into a double play and Tulowizki struck out.
5Two for one
The Royals made some noise again. Escobar singled and moved to third on Zobrist’s double. Cain flied out, but Escobar scored on a wild pitch. After Hosmer struck out, Morales walked and and Moustakas delivered an RBI single. Toronto struck back on a two-out home run from Goins.
6Base runners, but no runs
Escobar had a two-out single for the Royals, but the Royals came up empty in the frame. Bautista’s one-out walk also didn’t amount to anything for Toronto.
Hosmer had a one-out single, but there was to be no rally. Aaron Sanchez came into the game, and Morales flied out and Moustakas grounded out. Tulowitzki opened the inning by being called out on strikes. He wasn’t happy. Martin was also rung up looking and Pillar flied out. When Tulowitzki came back onto the field after the inning, he apparently said something inappropriate to home plate umpire John Hirschbeck and the got the heave-ho.
8One more for Toronto
Mark Lowe entered for the Blue Jays and set down the Royals quickly, although Gordon seemed displeased about the strike zone. Franklin Morales took over for the Royals. With one out, Revere beat out an infield single, Donaldson walked and Bautista got his first hit, a single to left that scored Revere.
9Royals don’t go quietly
Liam Hendricks gave up a single to Escobar and Zobrist doubled. Cain’s fly out scored Escobar and Hosmer had an RBI single. Toronto was forced to summon closer Roberto Osuna, and Morales greeted him with a mammoth two-run shot to right center. But that was as close as the Royals could get. Moustakas and Salvador Perez each grounded out and the Jays had their first series win.