KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It was a former Rays kind of day as Ben Zobrist's easy fly that somehow fell in for a hit began a five-run rally against David Price in the seventh inning, and the Royals rolled to a 6-3 win Saturday over the Blue Jays for a 2-0 lead in the AL Championship Series.
Wade Davis survived a shaky ninth for Kansas City after Luke Hochevar and Danny Duffy were solid in relief of Yordano Ventura.
Davis, one of three former Rays along with Zobrist and Price playing key roles in the game, gave up a leadoff single and walked pinch-hitter Cliff Pennington, but he bounced back to strike out leadoff man Ben Revere and Josh Donaldson. Jose Bautista then flied out to right to give Davis his third postseason save and the Royals another postseason comeback win.
"Our guys never quit. They keep going," Royals manager Ned Yost said.
K.C. had been held to one hit by Price before stringing together four singles and a double in their go-ahead inning. It got run-producing hits from Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Alex Gordon and Alex Rios, and an RBI groundout from Kendrys Morales.
It was a monumental collapse for Price, who had at one point recorded 18 straight outs. He fell to 0-7 in seven postseason starts. "I gave up hits at the wrong time," he said. "I felt good. … It's just a tough loss."
Now, the Jays head home for Game 3 on Monday. All but three of the previous 25 teams to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven era have won the series, though Toronto did rally from the same hole to beat the Rangers in the division round. "You got to get a win under your belt," manager John Gibbons said. "It won't be easy, no doubt about that."
For most of the afternoon, it appeared the Jays would forge a 1-1 tie.
Ryan Goins drove in a run off Ventura in the third, snapping an 18-inning scoreless streak by Royals pitchers, and Edwin Encarnacion and Troy Tulowitzki had RBIs in the sixth.
The only bad pitch Price threw the first six innings was his first, which Escobar swatted for a leadoff single. He threw first-pitch strikes to 12 of 14 batters at one point and struck out the side in the sixth. But K.C. finally got to him thanks to a costly defensive lapse.
Zobrist sent a popup to shallow right to start the seventh, and Goins gave chase from second and Bautista from right. Both wound up letting it drop. Cain followed with a single, and Hosmer's single got the Royals on the board. Morales added an RBI groundout before Moustakas came up.
In a 2-for-25 slump, he pulled a tying double to right. Gordon's double gave Kansas City the lead. Rios added another single off reliever Aaron Sanchez to close the book on Price, who was dinged for all five runs in the inning.