The Toronto Blue Jays had their backs up against the wall in the ALDS and they quickly found themselves in the same position in the ALCS.
Down three games to one against the white-hot Kansas City Royals, Game 5 was a must-win for Toronto. That is, if they wanted to #ComeTogether at least one more time.
And #ComeTogether they will for Game 6, as Edinson Volquez was no match for the Blue Jays’ big bats today as they downed the Royals 7-1 to send the series back to Kauffman Stadium on Friday night.
Chris Colabello got the Blue Jays going early with a solo shot off of Volquez in the bottom of the second. Volquez did settle down, but hit a speed bump in the sixth. He walked Ben Revere, hit Josh Donaldson, and walked Jose Bautista to load the bases with no one out. He then walked Edwin Encarnacion to score Revere from third, and Ned Yost promptly pulled Volquez from the game and brought in Kelvin Herrera. After Colabello struck out, Troy Tulowitzki delivered a big bases-clearing double to make it 5-0 Jays.
RBI doubles from Bautista in the seventh and Kevin Pillar in the eighth capped off Toronto’s scoring. The Royals’ lone run was thanks to Salvador Perez’s opposite-field home run to right, his fourth homer of the postseason.
Other than that, the Blue Jays had just as good a day on the mound as they did at the plate. Marco Estrada was nearly un-hittable, going 7 2/3 innings allowing just one run on three hits while striking out five and walking one. Aaron Sanchez got the final out of the eighth, and Roberto Osuna threw a 1-2-3 ninth inning to close the game.
Both teams will fly back to Kansas City tonight for Game 6 and, if necessary, Game 7. The Royals will try to clinch their second straight American League Pennant, while the Blue Jays will look to just stay alive.
If they do, a comeback can then be discussed. Only eleven teams in history have come back from a 3-1 LCS deficit, the last one being the 2012 San Francisco Giants. The last American League team to do so was the 2007 Boston Red Sox. Both of those teams went on to win the World Series.
Will Toronto do the somewhat possible, or will the Royals return to the Fall Classic with unfinished business? We’ll have to wait to find out!