The Kansas City Royals continued their hot play, using a four-run fifth to defeat the Tampa Bay Rays, 5-2, Friday night.
Despite Tampa jumping out to a 2-1 lead, Elliot Johnson once again became a fire-starter and tied the game with a run-scoring triple in the third. Johnson came home on an Alcides Escobar single, with Escobar scoring on an RBI from Salavdor Perez. Billy Butler drove home the final run of the rally with a sacrifice fly.
The Rays threatened in the seventh, but Aaron Crow struck out Yunel Escobar as the tying run at the plate. Tim Collins thwarted the rest of the rally inducing an inning-ending flyout. Perez and Butler added insurance RBIs in the top of the ninth inning.
The Royals won for the ninth time in 10 games, keeping pace with Cleveland, one-half game out of second place. Jeremy Guthrie starts for a chance to get the Royals a series win against Alex Cobb at 3:10 PM.