The Blue Jays beat the Red Sox for the ninth time in 11 games this season, 11-1 on Monday night at Boston. That left the Red Sox magic number for clinching the division at 3, as the second-place Detroit Tigers closed within 3 1/2 games of the front-runners with a 6-3 victory at Cleveland. Boston has just 6 games left, while Detroit has 5 games remaining.
"It really doesn't matter where we clinch it, but it would be nice to clinch it here," Boston Manager Joe Morgan said. "It might still be possible."
Toronto lost the AL East title on the final day in Detroit last season and was beaten by Boston in 1986 at Fenway Park when the Red Sox captured their last AL East crown.
"We saw a celebration in Detroit last year, we saw it here in 1986, and we don't want to see another one in 1988," Toronto outfielder Jesse Barfield said.
Left-hander Jeff Musselman (6-5) pitched a four-hitter through seven innings to lead the Blue Jays.
Detroit 6, Cleveland 3--Darrell Evans hit a three-run homer, his fifth in his last eight games, and Fred Lynn added a solo shot as the Tigers beat the Indians at Cleveland to keep their faint AL East title hopes alive.
Winner Eric King (4-1), usually a reliever, gave up 3 runs on 5 hits in 6 innings in his first start since Aug. 14. Mike Henneman pitched the final 3 innings for his 22nd save.
New York 5, Baltimore 4--Rafael Santana drove in 2 runs with an eighth-inning single as the Yankees beat the Orioles at Baltimore to stay alive in the East. The Yankees, who have 7 games left, trail the division leaders by 4 1/2 games.
The Yankee comeback made a winner of Steve Shields (5-5). Dave Righetti came on to pitch the final 2 innings and earn his 24th save.
Jay Tibbs (4-14) took the loss in relief. It was the ninth straight loss for Tibbs, an Oriole single-season record. His last win came on July 9.
Gubicza (20-7) won his last 6 decisions to join Bret Saberhagen, Paul Splittorff, Dennis Leonard and Steve Busby as 20-game winners for the Royals in their history.
Gubicza, who struck out 10 and walked one, retired the first 13 batters he faced.
New York 10, Philadelphia 4--Sid Fernandez allowed 6 hits in 7 innings at Philadelphia as the Mets won for the 16th time in their last 18 games. The NL East champions have scored 33 runs in their last 3 games.
Fernandez (11-10) struck out 3 and walked 2. Rick Aguilera and Terry Leach closed.
Montreal 3, Chicago 2-- Rookie Randy Johnson, an ex-USC star, allowed 3 hits in 6 innings to win his third straight start in the majors as the Expos edged the Cubs at Montreal.
Johnson (3-0), who struck out 4 and walked 3, has allowed just 5 earned runs in 20 innings.
Browning (18-5), who pitched a perfect game against the Dodgers on Sept 16, carried a one-hitter into the ninth. But Will Clark led off with a single and Kevin Mitchell followed with his 19th homer. After Candy Maldonado singled, John Franco relieved and set a club record by earning his 38th save in 40 opportunities.