Edwin Encarnacion is riding a career-best 25-game hitting streak and a run of eight straight games with at least one RBI. He hasn't struck out much in that latter run as he gets ready to face hard-throwing Danny Salazar.
Salazar will try to cool Encarnacion and the red-hot Toronto Blue Jays on Monday night at Rogers Centre opposite David Price, who has dominated the Cleveland Indians.
Encarnacion is batting .409 with 11 homers and 35 RBIs on his hit streak - the longest in the majors since a 28-game run by Colorado's Nolan Arenado in 2014. He has four homers in his last two games, highlighted by Saturday's three-homer, nine-RBI effort in a 15-1 rout of Detroit.
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The slugger went deep again the next day for his 30th homer in a 9-2 victory that completed a three-game sweep. Encarnacion is hitting .484 with seven homers, 24 RBIs and just three strikeouts in his last eight games.
Encarnacion has at least one extra-base hit in eight consecutive games, one shy of Shawn Green's team record set in 1999. His eight-game run with an RBI matched the Blue Jays record shared by Carlos Delgado, Willie Upshaw and Matt Stairs.
The Blue Jays (74-56) totaled 29 runs and 38 hits in the weekend sweep of the Tigers. Josh Donaldson was 6 for 13 with two homers in the series and Russell Martin also went deep twice for Toronto, which leads the New York Yankees by 1 1/2 games in the AL East.
"We're playing great baseball," manager John Gibbons said. "Everything's really clicking."
Encarnacion is 2 for 5 with a homer and a double against Salazar (11-7, 3.30 ERA), who is among baseball's leaders with 10.10 strikeouts per nine innings.
Salazar was scratched Friday because of a virus, and manager Terry Francona said he became ill Tuesday and missed a couple of days of his routine between starts, losing five to six pounds.
"You start losing that much weight, this will allow him to get some of his strength back," Francona said. "I think this has a chance to work out better for everybody."
The right-hander allowed five runs in 4 2-3 innings of a 6-2 loss at the New York Yankees on Aug. 22 after going 3-0 with a 0.95 ERA in his previous four outings.
Salazar is 1-1 with a 2.70 ERA in two starts versus Toronto.
He'll be opposed by a strikeout artist in Price (13-4, 2.42), who has 179 to rank among the majors' best. Price improved to 4-0 with a 1.98 ERA in five starts with the Blue Jays by limiting Texas to two runs in six innings Wednesday in a 12-4 road victory.
The left-hander is 8-0 with a 3.54 ERA in 11 starts at Rogers Centre, including two with Toronto.
Price is 9-1 with a 2.04 ERA in 12 starts against Cleveland, including 2-0 with a 0.42 ERA in three this year while with Detroit. Jason Kipnis is 5 for 11 versus Price this year and 7 for 20 overall, while Yan Gomes is 0 for 6 in this matchup in 2015 and hitless in 12 career at-bats.
Cleveland (63-66) opens a nine-game trip with this three-game series after going 5-0 at home, beating the Los Angeles Angels 9-2 on Sunday. Francisco Lindor is 17 for 34 during a nine-game hitting streak.
These teams split four games April 30-May 3.