While the Kansas City Royals overcame the weather, Toronto Blue Jays starter Sam Gaviglio was unable to overcome a fourth-inning balk.
Lucas Duda homered, Rosell Herrera had three hits and the Royals beat the Blue Jays 6-2 after a long rain delay Thursday night to split their four-game series.
Royals relievers Brian Flynn, Kevin McCarthy, Brandon Maurer and Wily Peralta shut down Toronto on three hits over the final five innings. Flynn (3-3) picked up the win with a scoreless inning.
“Difficult circumstances, really,” Kansas City manager Ned Yost said. “Long wait, waiting out the rain. We weren’t sure we were going to play. It just kept building up, building up and then it started dying down. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen.
“The bullpen did a good job of holding the fort and a good job by our hitters with four two-out hits to give us the lead.”
Kansas City took the lead with a three-run fourth highlighted by Jorge Bonifacio’s RBI triple.
Gaviglio (2-6) failed to make it through five innings for the eighth time in his past 13 starts. He allowed five runs and eight hits in 4 1/3 innings.
The right-hander came unraveled after a balk call and a delay of more than five minutes in the fourth. He attempted a pickoff throw, but the ball slipped out of his hand. After the umpires huddled, Herrera was awarded second base. There was also a replay review to confirm the balk, which took 4 minutes, 1 second.
Following the long delay, Gaviglio yielded three straight run-producing hits.
“I thought it was a balk, from my point of view,” Gaviglio said.
He said the delay did not cause him problems.
“I just kind of got a little up in the zone, didn’t make very good pitches,” Gaviglio said.
Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said Gaviglio is unable to get away with elevated pitches.
“He’s been getting hit around a little bit lately, primarily because he gets a lot of pitches up in the zone,” Gibbons said. “That’s not his style. He can’t do that. ”
Danny Jansen’s sacrifice fly in the second scored Teoscar Hernandez with the first Toronto run.
Kendrys Morales singled home Justin Smoak in the fourth with the final Blue Jays run.
Glenn Sparkman, who was making his first big league start, was removed after four innings and 75 pitches. He gave up two runs and four hits.
Rain delayed the start for 2 hours, 14 minutes – the third straight day that bad weather held up the first pitch.
“It was a little different,” Sparkman said. “I definitely wasn’t ready for it. I got a cup of coffee, got warmed back up and went out there.”