Tigers-Blue Jays Preview

The Toronto Blue Jays failed to pad their AL East lead when their prolific offense couldn't keep rolling in the finale of a road trip.

The Blue Jays will try for a better showing when they return home to face one of their former pitchers in Friday night's series opener against the Detroit Tigers.

Toronto (71-56) totaled 54 runs while batting .347 in a five-game win streak that ended with Thursday's 4-1 defeat to Texas. The Blue Jays went 1 for 8 with runners in scoring position while nearly getting shut out for the first time in seven weeks.

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Edwin Encarnacion saved his team from that fate with an RBI double in the eighth inning that extended his hit streak to 22 games, the longest in the majors this season. The Blue Jays had their division lead against the idle New York Yankees cut to 1 1/2 games after wrapping up a 6-2 road trip.

''Obviously, the road trip was a successful one. It would have been a superb one if we'd been able to pull that one out,'' said Jose Bautista, whose seventh-inning error led to three Texas runs. ''I don't think this loss is going to affect us in any way.''

Toronto, easily the MLB leader with 689 runs and the winner in 21 of 26, will try to get back on track in its first matchup against Matt Boyd (1-4, 7.04 ERA). The left-hander was traded from the Blue Jays to Detroit on July 30 in the David Price deal.

Price won't appear in this series because he pitched in Wednesday's 12-4 victory.

Boyd went 0-2 with a 14.85 ERA in his first two major league starts for the Blue Jays and has a 4.88 ERA in five appearances for Detroit, including four starts. He had a respectable performance Sunday against Texas, giving up three runs in six innings, but lost 4-2.

The Tigers (60-67) have continued to struggle in close games lately and fell 2-0 to the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday. Detroit has dropped six of seven, with five losses by two runs or fewer.

"I don't know how to explain it," designated hitter Victor Martinez said. "We just have to fly to Toronto and try again (Friday)."

Detroit took two of three from visiting Toronto in early July and dealt R.A. Dickey an 8-3 defeat in the middle game of the series. The knuckleballer gave up five runs and 11 hits in 5 2-3 innings.

Dickey (8-10, 4.26) allowed another five runs - all in the first inning - and 11 hits in his six innings Sunday against the Angels, but got enough support for a 12-5 win. He's won his past five decisions, though he's allowed a combined 10 runs and 20 hits in 10 innings of his past two starts.

Dickey is 3-0 with a 1.33 ERA in his last four home starts and is 1-0 with a 2.77 ERA in his two against Detroit since joining the Blue Jays in 2013.

Miguel Cabrera didn't get a chance to improve on his 3-for-17 showing against Dickey in the past six seasons because he went on the disabled list for a strained left calf July 4. Cabrera is batting .460 with two homers, nine doubles and 11 RBIs in 13 games since returning.

Martinez has three hits in his past 14 at-bats against Dickey while Ian Kinsler has six in his last 12, including a pair of homers. Rajai Davis is 5 for 8 with two doubles lifetime against him.

Encarnacion, batting .386 during his hit streak, went 1 for 10 in last month's series in Detroit. Ben Revere, acquired July 31 from Philadelphia, is hitting .483 in his last seven games.