Dennis (Oil Can) Boyd is back on track, and perhaps not coincidentally, so are the Boston Red Sox.
Boyd scattered eight hits Wednesday night and the streaking Red Sox lowered their magic number for clinching the A.L. East to seven with a 4-1 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers at Boston.
"No one's going to be doing us any favors," said Dwight Evans, who hit his 24th homer and a double as Boston won its 11th straight game at home. "We're just trying to win it on our own. We're ready to win the games we need."
The Red Sox have a 10-game lead over New York and Toronto, but they were struggling when Boyd was on suspension with personal problems.
Boyd has won his last four decisions and the Red Sox have all but ended the race by winning 15 of their last 18 games.
"I think he's looking at it more as a team game now, and not the 'Oil Can Boyd Show,' " said Don Baylor, who hit his 30th home run right in front of Evans' in the sixth inning. "I think he is a little more relaxed. He's got the same intensity, but he's not jumping around as much and he's not as animated."
Boyd (15-9) lost his shutout bid when Milwaukee's Bill Schroeder homered with one out in the ninth.
The Brewers put runners on second and third with nobody out in the first inning, but Boyd retired the next three batters.
"That was the killer," Milwaukee Manager George Bamberger said. "You can't let a good pitcher get away like that."
Boston took a 2-0 lead in the second inning when Baylor walked and scored on a double by Evans. He took third on a wild pitch by Mark Knudson (0-1) and scored on Tony Armas' infield out.
Boston's Wade Boggs extended his hitting streak to 19 games with a first-inning single.
Detroit 8, Toronto 6--Jack Morris allowed four home runs, but hung on for his 18th victory, and pinch-hitter Larry Herndon hit a three-run homer as the Tigers downed the Blue Jays at Toronto.
Alan Trammell broke a 3-3 tie in the seventh with an RBI single off Toronto's Jim Clancy (14-11), and Herndon greeted Jeff Musselman with his seventh homer.
Morris allowed eight hits, struck out eight and walked two before Willie Hernandez came on to get the last out and gain his 22nd save.
Jesse Barfield hit his 32nd and 33rd home runs for Toronto, and George Bell added his 31st.
Baltimore 8, New York 3--Jim Traber drove in three runs, Larry Sheets hit a two-run homer and Eric Bell won in his first major-league start as the Orioles beat the Yankees at New York to end a five-game losing streak.
Bell (1-0), allowed six hits in 6 innings before giving way to Don Aase, who pitched 2 scoreless innings for his 32nd save.
Don Mattingly had a run-scoring single for the Yankees, stretching his hitting streak to 17 games.
Cleveland 5, Minnesota 2--Pat Tabler singled home Joe Carter with the go-ahead run in a three-run sixth inning and the Indians turned back the Twins at Cleveland.
Greg Swindell (3-1) allowed the Twins seven hits in seven innings.
Gary Gaetti hit his 31st homer for the Twins.
Texas 4, Oakland 0--Pete Incaviglia hit two home runs and Ed Correa scattered six hits over 8 innings at Oakland as the Rangers handed the A's their sixth straight defeat.
Correa (10-13) struck out 10. Mitch Williams got the last out for his eighth save.
Chicago 3, Seattle 0--Floyd Bannister and Bob Thigpen combined on a four-hit shutout as the White Sox defeated the Mariners at Seattle.
Seattle's Mark Langston (12-12) struck out 14 White Sox, giving him 211 strikeouts this season, breaking the Mariners' record of 209 set by Bannister in 1982.
Bannister (10-11) pitched six innings, allowing just four hits. Thigpen, who has not allowed a run in 27 innings, pitched the final three innings for his seventh save.
Ivan Calderon doubled home a run and scored on Tim Hulett's sacrifice fly in the Seattle seventh, and Russ Morman hit a home run in the ninth.