Pillar homers in 8th to lift Blue Jays over Royals 6-5
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — With Kevin Pillar down in the count 0-2 with two outs in the eighth inning, Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez went out to talk to reliever Blaine Boyer.
Whatever they discussed did not work.
Pillar hit a two-run homer on the next pitch to lift the Toronto Blue Jays over the Royals 6-5 on Tuesday night.
“You fall behind, it’s the eighth inning,” Pillar said. “He probably tells him don’t give me anything to hit, but that’s the beauty of baseball. You’ve still got to execute pitches.
“The only thing that threw me off a little is after the meeting they kind of shifted their infield back to the right side, so I figured I was probably going to get something away or something soft to see if I would chase. I didn’t overthink the situation. I just told myself to stay ready.”
Boyer (2-1) retired his first two batters before walking Aledmys Diaz. Pillar hit the next pitch over the wall down the left field line.
Ken Giles worked a perfect ninth for his 14th save and second with the Blue Jays since being acquired from Houston on July 30.
Perez and Jorge Bonifacio hit back-to-back doubles in the seventh off Jake Petricka (2-1) to give the Royals a short-lived 5-4 lead.
Adalberto Mondesi had a career-high four hits, including two doubles, stole three bases, drove in a run and scored a run for Kansas City.
“That’s the way I play the game,” Mondesi said. “I just got to keep working hard and keep doing my thing, so I can go out and show the fans what they want to see.”
The Blue Jays, who had scored four runs in their previous four games total, jumped to a 3-0 advantage. Teoscar Hernandez and Kendrys Morales walked to lead off the second and both scored. Pillar contributed a two-out RBI single, while the other run scored when Diaz grounded into a double play.
Heath Fillmyer walked two more Jays in the third and hit Russell Martin with a pitch with the bases loaded for the third run.
The Royals answered with three runs in third, which included Perez’s run-producing double and Whit Merrifield and Alex Gordon adding RBI singles.
Danny Jansen put the Blue Jays ahead 4-3 in the fourth with his first big league home run in his second game.
The Royals quickly tied it with Mondesi’s two-out single scoring Alcides Escobar, who had doubled.
Fillmyer left after five innings and 93 pitches, allowing four runs, five hits and five walks.
“I fell behind a lot of counts and ended up walking them and three of them ended up costing me,” Fillmyer said. “When you get yourself in trouble, it’s never what you want to do.”
Blue Jays starter Ryan Borucki was pulled after four innings, yielding four runs, six hits and four walks.
“It was a tough one for him,” Toronto manager John Gibbons said. “His command was definitely off. His big pitch, his changeup, was missing. He developed a pretty good blister on his (right) foot and I know that was tender. I felt after four it was probably enough.”
Borucki said he initially felt the blister in the third inning.
“In the fourth I felt it kind of split open,” he said. “It was kind of tough to push off at the end.”
The Royals have lost 10 of 12.
Rain delayed the start of the game 31 minutes.
ROYALS RECALL LOPEZ
The Royals recalled RHP Jorge Lopez, who was acquired from the Brewers on July 27 as part of the Mike Moustakas trade, from Triple-A Omaha after the game. He will start Wednesday. The club will make a corresponding before the game to make roster space for Lopez.
DOUBLES FOR ESCOBAR
Escobar’s sixth-inning double was the 200th of his career. He is the 11th Royal to reach that milestone.
JAYS ACQUIRE BAKER
The Blue Jays acquired minor league RHP Bryan Baker from the Rockies as the player to be named in a July 26 trade that sent RHP Seunghawan Oh to Colorado. Baker posted a 3.80 ERA in 43 relief appearances with Class A Lancaster.
Blue Jays: Boyer was making his first appearance since April 29 and missing 61 games with a back strain. ... RHP Aaron Sanchez (bruised right index finger) will make a rehab start Wednesday for Class A Dunedin in the Florida State League.
Blue Jays: RHP Marco Estrada (5-9, 4.84 ERA) will start the third game of the series.
Royals: Lopez will replace RHP Burch Smith in the rotation and make his Kansas City debut.