Kansas City Royals: Revisiting the 2015 ALCS Game 5

(Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
(Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /
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Kansas City Royals, Eric Hosmer
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To start the game, both pitchers knew their teams would be counting on them to keep them in the game from the beginning.

Game 5 got off to a very quiet start as both pitchers showed up to give their team a chance to take home the win. Following each other’s lead, the first, second and third innings took off with a battle between the pitchers.

In the top of the first, Estrada started off pitching Alcides Escobar into a groundout. He followed up with two strikeouts to Ben Zobrist and Lorenzo Cain. Volquez answered back. He pitched Ben Revere into a groundout, followed up by a strikeout to Josh Donaldson and a popfly from Jose Bautista.

In the top of the second, Estrada again shut down the Royals bats, retiring all three batters he faced. Volquez started off the inning fine with a popfly from Edwin Encarnacion. With one out, Volquez threw an 0-2 pitch to Chris Colabello, who knocked the ball to left-center for a home run. Volquez quickly shut down the inning, giving up a walk to Dioner Navarro, but recording the other two outs without further damage.

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The third inning followed up much like the first. Estrada went three up three down to retire his ninth straight batter of the game. Wanting to keep his team in the game, Volquez tightened up the screws. He followed Estrada, retiring all three batters he faced to end the third with the Blue Jays up 1-0.