The Oakland Athletics couldn't add to their AL West lead, but they keep building plenty of momentum.
Dan Straily hopes he can contribute to that run after losing his last two starts.
The right-hander faces the Toronto Blue Jays for the first time since his major league debut Tuesday night when the A's go for a fifth straight win.
Entering this three-game set with a six-game edge over second-place Texas - their largest division lead since Sept. 27, 2006 - the A's (63-43) maintained that cushion with Monday's 9-4 victory.
The Rangers rallied to defeat the Los Angeles Angels 4-3 earlier Monday.
"You keep trying to pile up the wins, add them up at the end and see where you're at," said manager Bob Melvin , whose team has matched its best record through 106 games since 1992 and is tied with Tampa Bay for the best record in the AL.
Oakland goes for its longest undefeated stretch since a six-game surge May 24-29 with Straily (6-4, 4.43 ERA) coming off back-to-back losses to the Angels. He had won a career-best five consecutive decisions prior to that."I wasn't keeping it down," said Straily, who was charged with five runs in 4 1-3 innings of Thursday's 8-3 defeat. "I still got ahead, then they got to some balls, and obviously I left it too good. Just didn't command it."
That wasn't the case the last time Tuesday's starter Mark Buehrle (6-7, 4.50) took the ball for the Blue Jays (48-57). The veteran left-hander fanned a season-best nine and tossed a two-hitter in Thursday's 4-0 win over Houston that helped Toronto end a season-worst seven-game skid.
It was Buehrle's ninth career shutout, and first since a perfect game against Tampa Bay four seasons ago.
"I had everything working," he told the Blue Jays' official website. "I was making pitches when I had to, movement was good, keeping guys off balance. I'm not going to sit here and say it was one pitch that was making guys strike out a lot. I struck out multiple guys on certain pitches, but it was just one of those games that I had everything going for me."
However, he's struggled in 13 starts in Oakland, going 2-7 with a 4.45 ERA - all while with the Chicago White Sox.
Improving those numbers could be asking a lot as Buehrle will face an A's team that's won 24 of 30 at home and is scoring 5.4 runs per contest during a 7-2 run there.
Buehrle has never faced Yoenis Cespedes , who has back-to-back three-hit games and seven RBIs in the last two after coming up a double shy of the cycle Monday. The Home Run Derby champion's solo shot in the eighth ended a career-high 25-game homerless streak."It's not about the homer. I've started to feel better and everything is going to be fine," Cespedes said through an interpreter. "When I'm hitting well, I feel like I'm contributing my grain of sand, doing my part."
AL player of the week Edwin Encarnacion is doing his part. After going 9 for 12 with two homers and eight RBIs as Toronto took three of four from the Astros over the weekend, he hit his third homer in four games Monday to move within one of reaching 30 for the second consecutive season.
Straily held Encarnacion hitless in three at-bats and threw six innings of one-run ball in a 5-4, 15-inning home win Aug. 3.
|Toronto Blue Jays|
|June 28, 2013||Melky Cabrera||15-Day DL||Left knee tendinitis|
|June 28, 2013||Melky Cabrera||15-Day DL||Left knee tendinitis|
|June 03, 2013||Ramon Ortiz||60-Day DL||Right elbow strain|
|June 02, 2013||Ramon Ortiz||Day-to-Day||Left game - right elbow|
|June 01, 2013||Brandon Morrow||15-Day DL||Right forearm strain|
|May 28, 2013||Brett Lawrie||15-Day DL||Left ankle sprain|
|July 25, 2013||John Jaso||7-Day DL||Concussion|
|July 20, 2013||Yoenis Cespedes||Day-to-Day||Sore left wrist|
|June 29, 2013||Jarrod Parker||Day-to-Day||Left game - right hamstring cramp|
|June 20, 2013||Derek Norris||Day-to-Day||Left game - groin injury|
|June 11, 2013||Yoenis Cespedes||Day-to-Day||Left game - left hamstring tightness|
|May 07, 2013||Josh Reddick||15-Day DL||Sprained right wrist|
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Mark Buehrle calls it luck. Manager John Gibbons calls it anything but luck. Either way, they'll both take the outcome.
Buehrle allowed five hits over seven innings, Jose Bautista and Emilio Bonifacio each homered and the Toronto Blue Jays ended Oakland's winning streak at four with a 5-0 victory over the Athletics on Tuesday night.
"The first three innings there were not too many quiet outs, Buehrle said. "That's why it's the whole luck thing."
Colby Rasmus also drove in a run and Edwin Encarnacion had two hits as Toronto improved to 11-5 against the AL West.
Derek Norris and Jed Lowrie each had two hits for the A's, who acquired third baseman Alberto Callaspo from the Angels for infielder Grant Green in a trade announced during the game. Callaspo was hitting .253 with five home runs and 36 RBIs entering Tuesday.
Buehrle (7-7) extended his scoreless innings streak to 20, did not walk a batter and struck out two. He retired 10 of the first 11 batters he faced five days after tossing a two-hit shutout against the Houston Astros .
"He does everything right," Gibbons said. "He's `old reliable.' He's been around for a while and has had a tremendous career."
Buehrle thought he had given up a home run to Coco Crisp , the game's first batter. He also thought Josh Reddick got him in the third. Both balls died on the warning track.
"You still have to make your pitches and hit location and it is still a lot of luck," said Buehrle, who has won at least 10 games in each of the last 12 years. "This is a tough place to hit at night."
A's manager Bob Melvin was impressed with Buehrle's craftiness.
"We just couldn't get anything going against Buehrle," Melvin said. "Even though he doesn't throw hard, he bullies the right-handers in with cutters and throws changeups, back-door breaking balls, and keeps you off balance."
Dan Straily (6-5) lost his third straight decision, giving up five runs - two earned - on six hits. He walked two and struck out two.
"You saw some two-strike hits, which means he probably wasn't as precise as he needs to be, especially when he's ahead," Melvin said. "Then he got some balls in the middle of the plate."
Blue Jays right-hander Steve Delabar struck out the side in the eighth on nine pitches and leads all AL relievers with 70 strikeouts.
"You can't get any more dominating than that," Gibbons said. "You don't see that too often."
Bautista's two-out home run in the first put Toronto on the board.
The Blue Jays added an unearned run in the fourth. Encarnacion, Adam Lind and Rasmus hit consecutive singles, with Yeonis Cespedes misplaying the ball in left field, allowing Encarnacion to score.
Bonifacio led off the fifth with a home run. Jose Reyes walked and Maicer Izturis was safe when Adam Rosales threw wildly. Reyes scored on the play. Rasmus added an RBI single.
The Blue Jays improved to 11-21 since their major league-best 11-game winning streak.
Darren Oliver pitched the ninth and went over the 1,900-inning mark for his career.
"He's had a marvelous career that speaks for itself," Gibbons said. "He's a lot like Buehrle. They both keep answering the bell."
NOTES: A's INF Eric Sogard was credited with a single in the first inning of Monday night's game, with the error taken away from Edwin Encarnacion . It gives Sogard an eight-game hitting streak. ... A's LHP Brett Anderson (foot) threw 57 pitches in a side session. He'll likely throw live batting practice on Friday. ... RHP Bartolo Colon (14-3, 2.54 ERA) is scheduled to start for the A's on Wednesday. He's 10-5 lifetime against the Blue Jays. ... Blue Jays RHP R.A. Dickey (8-11, 4.86) makes the start for the Blue Jays. He's 0-3 in his last four starts after a season-best three-game winning streak. ... Encarnacion has reached base safely in 16 of his last 25 plate appearances. ... Buehrle last pitched against the A's in 2011 and has a three-game winning streak against them.