Davis can't nail down save in return from DL

All-Star closer felt good to go, but yields go-ahead 2-run hit in 9th

Davis can't nail down save in return from DL

KANSAS CITY -- All-Star closer Wade Davis, out since July 31 with a right flexor strain, was activated from the disabled list on Friday and the Royals didn't waste any time getting him back in action.

Davis, though, gave up two runs in the ninth and couldn't protect a one-run lead as the Royals dropped a 7-6 decision in the series opener between American League Wild Card contenders.

There was no easing Davis back into action.

"He was very comfortable," manager Ned Yost said. "We asked how he felt. And he said, 'I'm ready to go. I'm ready to close.' It's not like he didn't do his rehab stuff. He pitched well in rehab."

Yost on pitching in 7-6 loss

Davis confirmed he was good to go.

"They asked me if I felt like I could go out and close," Davis said. "I said 'Yeah, absolutely.' If I'm healthy, I don't think I can't get the job done for sure. I felt good, I felt clean, I felt crisp. No complaints on that part. Just the result."

Davis hit the first batter he faced, Ian Kinsler, on the first pitch.

Then, Jose Iglesias smoked a one-hopper that scooted under shortstop Alcides Escobar's glove -- had Escobar made the stop, it most likely would have been a double play.

But the ball skipped to the gap and Kinsler raced to third with Iglesias taking second. Miguel Cabrera then grounded a two-run single to left.

"I felt pretty crisp," Davis said. "As far as the feeling goes, I felt pretty good."

Davis really only wanted one or two pitches back.

"The hit-by-pitch, for sure," Davis said. "I can pretty much pitch around two singles any day of the week. The hit by pitch is obviously the game changer."

The Royals had rallied to take a 6-5 lead, hoping to avoid a third straight loss. It wasn't to be.

"It really hurts, losing a game like that," Davis said. "Definitely something you don't want to let happen like that. It's definitely on me.

"I executed every single pitch with the exception of two, and I can live with that. The result is unacceptable and unfortunate."

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.