Royals rout Blue Jays 14-2, 1 win from World Series return

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Royals rout Blue Jays 14-2, 1 win from World Series return
Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Edinson Volquez throws against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning in Game 1 of baseball's American League Championship Series, Friday, Oct. 16, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Kansas City Royals' Salvador Perez watches his home run during the fourth inning in Game 1 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday, Oct. 16, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Kansas City Royals' Salvador Perez, left, rounds the base after hitting a home run as Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marco Estrada looks away during the fourth inning in Game 1 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Friday, Oct. 16, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Kansas City Royals relief pitcher Luke Hochevar, left, and catcher Salvador Perez celebrate their 5-0 win over the Toronto Blue Jays in Game 1 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Friday, Oct. 16, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher David Price throws against the Kansas City Royals during the second inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez, right, makes a one-handed grab of a foul ball as home plate umpire Laz Diaz rules it a dead ball during the sixth inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
Toronto Blue Jays' Josh Donaldson slides into home plate to score on an RBI single by Edwin Encarnacion during the sixth inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the Kansas City Royals on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
KANSAS CITY, MO - OCTOBER 17: Ben Zobrist #18 of the Kansas City Royals hits a single in the seventh inning against the Toronto Blue Jays during game two of the American League Championship Series at Kauffman Stadium on October 17, 2015 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Chris Colabello, left, picks off Kansas City Royals' Lorenzo Cain at first base during the eighth inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher David Price, front right, reacts after being taken out during the seventh inning of Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the Kansas City Royals, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Toronto Blue Jays' Jose Bautista reacts after striking out against the Kansas City Royals to end the top of the seventh inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Kansas City Royals relief pitcher Kelvin Herrera, left,and third baseman Mike Moustakas celebrates after the end of the top of the eighth inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
TORONTO, CANADA - OCTOBER 19: Marcus Stroman #6 of the Toronto Blue Jays throws the first pitch of Game 3 of the ALCS against the Kansas City Royals at the Rogers Centre on Monday, October 19, 2015 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Jon Blacker/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 19: Troy Tulowitzki #2 of the Toronto Blue Jays celebrates after hitting a three-run home run in the third inning against the Kansas City Royals during game three of the American League Championship Series at Rogers Centre on October 19, 2015 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 19: Ben Revere #7 of the Toronto Blue Jays is safe at first base in the eighth inning against the Kansas City Royals during game three of the American League Championship Series at Rogers Centre on October 19, 2015 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Kansas City Royals right fielder Alex Rios catches a fly ball hit by Toronto Blue Jays' Justin Smoak during the eighth inning in Game 3 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Monday, Oct. 19, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Toronto Blue Jays' Kevin Pillar, left, scores past Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez on a hit by Ryan Goins during the second inning in Game 3 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Monday, Oct. 19, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Roberto Osuna and catcher Russell Martin celebrates their 11-8 win against the Kansas City Royals in Game 3 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Monday, Oct. 19, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher R.A. Dickey throws against the Kansas City Royals during the first inning in Game 4 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
Kansas City Royals' Lorenzo Cain scores past Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher R.A. Dickey on a passed ball during the first inning in Game 4 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Kansas City Royals' Ben Zobrist watches his two run home run against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning in Game 4 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Toronto Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista hits a single against the Kansas City Royals during the sixth inning in Game 4 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Toronto Blue Jays center fielder Kevin Pillar reacts to a two run single by Kansas City Royals' Lorenzo Cain during the eighth inning in Game 4 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Members of the Kansas City Royals celebrate their 14-2 win against the Toronto Blue Jays during Game 4 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Edinson Volquez throws against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning in Game 5 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Tim Donnelly)
Toronto Blue Jays' Chris Colabello rounds the bases after a home run off Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Edinson Volquez during the second inning in Game 5 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
Kansas City Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain get get a glove on a RBI double by Toronto Blue Jays' Kevin Pillar during the eighth inning in Game 5 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marco Estrada celebrates after their 7-1 win against the Kansas City Royals in Game 5 of baseball's American League Championship Series on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, in Toronto. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
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TORONTO (AP) -- Ben Zobrist and the relentless Kansas City Royals showed they can play home run derby, too. And with one more win, they'll have a chance to show off their power in a return trip to the World Series.

Zobrist hit a two-run homer on knuckleballer R.A. Dickey's fourth pitch of the game, Alex Rios connected an inning later and the Royals romped past the Toronto Blue Jays 14-2 Tuesday for a 3-1 lead in the American League Championship Series.

Lorenzo Cain scored on a passed ball and Mike Moustakas had a sacrifice fly in an LCS-record four-run top of the first.

"We're a good offensive team, Eric Hosmer said. "Our park, our style of play is a little different. We like to use our legs and be athletic, but when we come to some of these parks where the fences aren't as deep we've got some guys that can put the ball in the seats."

Alcides Escobar had four RBIs and Cain drove in three runs as the Royals bounced back from an 11-8 loss Monday. Kansas City led 5-2 in the seventh before breaking away.

Blue Jays infielder Cliff Pennington relieved in the ninth inning, becoming the first primarily position player to pitch in the postseason, STATS said. Greeted by cheers, he allowed two hits and got one out.

Kansas City can win the pennant Wednesday, when Edinson Volquez starts against Toronto's Marco Estrada in a Game 1 rematch.

Royals Stand On World Series Precipice


"It's a do-or-die game for us," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "But they do it all year. I think these guys will let this one go and they'll show up to play tomorrow. ... I know these guys will be ready."

After flashing power to build a 5-0 lead on the long ball, the Royals returned to their pesky ways late in the game against the Blue Jays' struggling bullpen. They scored nine runs with three more sacrifice flies, a barrage of slashing hits and heads-up baserunning.

"We were really focused on being productive collectively," Rios said. "And I guess we're doing a pretty good job of doing that."

Blue Jays fans had seen enough after Cain's two-run single in the eighth, turning their ever-optimistic cheers to jeers when Mark Lowe replaced Ryan Tepera.

The 36-year-old Chris Young bested Dickey, 40, in a bookish matchup of veteran starters - only the pairing of the Yankees' Randy Johnson and Detroit's Kenny Rogers in the 2006 ALDS tops the duo for combined age.

But just like his counterpart's effort in Game 4 of the Division Series against Texas, the 6-foot-10 Young was lifted one out shy of qualifying for a victory when Ned Yost went to his bullpen with a runner on first with two outs in the fifth. Yost wasn't willing to take any chances against Josh Donaldson, who already had an RBI double.

Dickey never had a chance to get that first playoff victory in a 13-year big league career.

Escobar got a hit leading off for the fourth straight game, starting this one with a bunt down the third-base line. Zobrist connected for his first homer of the ALCS.

Rios homered against his former team in the second for a 5-0 lead. After Dickey hit Escobar with a pitch - a call that needed replay review to get it right - he walked Cain one out later and was done after 1 2-3 innings.

Young used that steep arm angle to outwit the powerful Jays, who were 53-28 at home in the regular season but just 11-14 with the roof closed - which it was Tuesday.

He held them hitless until Ryan Goins' one-out single in the third. Donaldson drove him home with a ground-rule double down the left-field line on an 83 mph slider. Jose Bautista added an RBI grounder to close the gap to 5-2 and get those white towels twirling at Rogers Centre.

But Luke Hochevar, Ryan Madson, Kelvin Herrera and Franklin Morales shut down the Blue Jays the rest of the way.

Kansas City's four-spot in the seventh to made it 9-2. Escobar and Hosmer had sacrifice flies to deep center, Cain singled to extend his postseason hitting streak to 13 games and Alex Gordon scored on Tepera's wild pitch.

Cain hit a two-run single in the eighth, and Escobar drove in two off Pennington in the ninth.

"We feel good. We like the way we're playing right now," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "Our offense has been really, really good."

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Volquez pitched two-hit ball for six innings in a 5-0 win in the opener and recalled telling catcher Salvador Perez, "I feel sexy throwing down and away." Estrada gave up three runs and six hits in 5 1-3 innings.

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