Kansas City averted what would have been a disappointing blown save by Leo Nunez, and scored six times in the bottom of the eighth inning to snap a seven-game losing streak with an 8-4 win against the Toronto Blue Jays Friday night at Kauffman Stadium.
The Royals led 2-1 when Nunez took the mound for the top of the eighth, with Zack Greinke in line for his fourth win of the year, but the Blue Jays scored three times -- the first runs of the year allowed by Nunez -- to take a 4-2 lead.
But Kansas City rallied with its biggest single-inning scoring output of the year by scoring six runs on five hits, two walks, and two Toronto errors in the fateful eighth frame. Catcher John Buck's second double of the night drove in the winning run.
Despite the blown save, Nunez (2-0) got credit for the victory due to Kansas City's offensive explosion in the eighth. Greinke took a no decision after limiting Toronto to five hits and one earned run in seven innings. He struck out four and walked one, and the lone run scored on a solo home run to right center by Blue Jays first baseman Lyle Overbay in the seventh.
Every Royals player with a plate appearance in the game had at least one hit, led by two hits apiece by Buck and center fielder David DeJesus. Buck and first baseman Ross Gload each scored a pair of runs, with Gload hustling for a crucial leadoff double, and then scoring the game's first run in the fifth inning.
Closer Joakim Soria came in and worked a scoreless ninth in a non-save situation to preserve the win and snap Kansas City's winless streak.
The Royals and Blue Jays play game two of the weekend series Saturday at 6:10, with Kansas City rookie right-hander Luke Hochevar (0-1, 11.57) facing Toronto right-hander Shaun Marcum (2-1, 3.42).
Ross Gload Photo Credit: Reuters Pictures