But Escobar dived to his right and snared the ball as he hit the ground. Escobar quickly rose to one knee and fired a one-hop strike to Hosmer, who stretched to just nip the sliding Bogaerts at first.
The Red Sox waited to hear from their replay coordinator, and then passed on a challenge.
"That was such a huge play," Royals starter Ian Kennedy said. "At first I thought it was a great play just to save a run. And then we get the out, with Esky throwing a fast guy out from his knees. Esky has saved me all season."
Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.