Friday, October 23, 2015
ALCS: JAYS ELIMINATED
Jose Bautista was a one-man wrecking crew for Toronto in a playoff thriller driving in three runs with a pair of homers included a two-run shot in the eighth inning that tied it at 3-3 when the Jays were down to their last five outs.
But the Royals answered with a run to end Toronto's season and then held off the Jays in a nail-biting ninth.
"I'm definitely proud of our team,'' Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "It's been a fun group to be around every day.''
"We're all disappointed we're not moving on, that's baseball,'' he added. "We put up our best fight today.''
Kansas City shortstop Alcides Escobar was unanimously selected the ALCS MVP.
There was drama aplenty before a jacked-up Kauffman Stadium crowd of 40,494, including a 45-minute rain delay midway through the eighth.
When the game resumed, Toronto closer Roberto Osuna was on the mound. The 20-year-old phenom had been lights out most of the season but he walked Lorenzo Cain, who came home on Eric Hosmer's ensuing single for a 4-3 lead. Kendrys Morales singled to put men on first and second.
A double play ended the inning but the damage was done.
Russell Martin singled off closer Wade Davis to open the ninth. Dalton Pompey came on as a pinch-runner and promptly stole second and then third.
Kevin Pillar worked an eight-pitch walk and stole second, removing the double play opportunity as pinch-hitter Dioner Navarro struck out. Davis then struck out Ben Revere, leaving MVP candidate Josh Donaldson as the Jays' final out and Bautista on deck.
Donaldson, 0 for 4 on the night, grounded out to third in a tense at-bat to end the evening, leaving men on second and third.