Jarrod Dyson finished 3-for-3 with a clutch two-out RBI single in the eighth to help lift the Kansas City Royals over the Oakland Athletics, 4-3, in the middle contest of a three-game set at Kauffman Stadium.
After recording the first two outs of the eighth, Ryan Cook (1-2) couldn't buy an out. Miguel Tejada reached when shortstop Adam Rosales couldn't handle an easy ground ball. Pinch-runner Alcides Escobar stole second, and Cook threw eight of nine pitches out of the strike zone to walk the next two batters. Dyson's single up the middle broke the tie and gave the Royals a 4-3 lead.
"We know as a team we can't give up," said Dyson. "We've got enough talent to get back in the ball game as long as we don't hang our head, we give ourselves a shot."
Mike Moustakas had a solo shot while Eric Hosmer and Billy Butler each had an RBI for Kansas City, winners of four of their last six.
Aaron Crow (6-3) tossed a scoreless eighth to earn the win and Greg Holland faced the minimum in the ninth to collect his 20th save of the year.
Josh Donaldson went 2-for-3 with a solo home run, two RBI and two runs scored for the A's, who lost for the first time in five meetings against the Royals this season.
"That was a very poor game for us," said A's manager Bob Melvin. "The way we started it, the way it ended, really everything in between. We didn't play well defensively, we didn't come through in some situations offensively."
Oakland opened up the scoring in the second. Donaldson drew a one-out walk and Seth Smith singled to right. Josh Reddick drove in Donaldson with a line drive base hit to center, Smith and Reddick advanced a base when Dyson's throw home was off target. On an Rosales grounder to third, Smith tried to score but was out by a mile.
Kansas City gave the A's a gift in the third when a routine inning-ending fly ball dropped between three Royals players in right field to score John Jaso from second. Donaldson was generously awarded an RBI on the play. Jaso singled and Yoenis Cespedes worked a walk to reach base.
Dyson singled and stole second to begin the home half of the third followed by an Alex Gordon walk. Jarrod Parker's failed pick off attempt to second went into center field to advance the runners one bag. Butler's ground out to third cut the deficit in half.
Moustakas connected on a changeup over the right-field wall to tie the game in the fourth.
Donaldson crushed a fastball down the middle to deep left to give Oakland the lead back in the sixth.
After an Elliot Johnson single and a Dyson walk in the seventh, Parker was replaced by Jerry Blevins. Gordon drew a four-pitch walk to load the bases. Hosmer's sacrifice fly to center tied the game at 3-3.
Ervin Santana surrendered three runs on seven hits with five strikeouts over seven frames, while Parker yielded three runs -- two earned -- on five hits and three walks in 6 1/3 innings ... Oakland is 16-11 in one-run games ... Kansas City was 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position, while Oakland finished 2-for-7 ... The Royals are 30-6 when they score more than three runs ... Oakland is just 16-19 in day games.