Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

AMERICAN LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES - BLUE JAYS 7, ROYALS 1 Estrada's Gem Keeps Jays Alive

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

AMERICAN LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES - BLUE JAYS 7, ROYALS 1 Estrada's Gem Keeps Jays Alive

Article excerpt

PLAYOFF GLANCE

Wednesdays games

Blue Jays 7, Royals 1

Mets 8, Cubs 3 (See story, Page 3B) INSIDE: More playoff coverage 3B

TORONTO - Marco Estrada came up with a superb start in the most important outing of his career, stopping the Royals' hit parade and helping the Toronto Blue Jays send the AL Championship Series back to Kansas City. Estrada pitched one-hit ball into the eighth inning, giving Toronto's tattered bullpen a rest, and the Blue Jays beat the Royals 7-1 Wednesday to close to 3-2 in the best-of-seven matchup.

"It's the start that we needed, Troy Tulowitzki said. "They're a great team over there. We know that. But this guy kept them off balance and allowed the offense to settle in and get some runs.

Tulowitzki provided three of those runs. He broke open with a bases-clearing double off Kelvin Herrera in the sixth, giving him seven RBIs in the series. Edwin Encarnacion had walked with the bases loaded against Edinson Volquez, who seemed flustered by close calls against the Royals.

Kansas City had 30 hits in the first two games in Toronto, but Estrada faced the minimum 20 batters before Lorenzo Cain walked with two outs in the seventh. Closer Roberto Osuna was perfect in the ninth.

Yordano Ventura will start for the defending AL champs Friday in Game 6 against Game 2 loser David Price.

Estrada, a 32-year-old free-agent to be, enabled his bullpen to rest, a day after Kansas City romped 14-2 in a game that saw infielder Cliff Pennington pitch in the ninth.

"This time around I had a better fastball command, said Estrada, who gave up three runs in the opener. "That was the key to this game.

Toronto is trying to become just the 13th team to rally and win among 80 who trailed 3-1 in best-of-seven postseason series. It has happened four of 17 times in the LCS, including when the Royals bounced back against the Blue Jays in 1985 en route to Kansas City's only World Series title. In this year's best-of-five Division Series, Toronto fell behind 0-2, then won three straight against Texas. …

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