Blue Jays-Orioles Preview

An AL East title and possible home-field advantage throughout the playoffs are very much within reach for the Toronto Blue Jays, the majors' highest scoring team that now faces one that hasn't produced a run in three straight games.

The Blue Jays conclude the regular season with a seven-game road trip that begins with Monday night's matchup against the Baltimore Orioles.

Toronto, which secured its first postseason berth since 1993 Friday, has a magic number of four to clinch the AL East. The Blue Jays (90-65) are also battling Kansas City for the league's best record with the chance to spend the majority of the postseason at Rogers Centre.

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''I wouldn't even say that having the best record is our first goal,'' third baseman Josh Donaldson said. ''Our first goal is to win the division.''

Donaldson brought the Blue Jays a step closer by homering with two outs in the bottom of the ninth in Sunday's 5-4 victory over Tampa Bay that closed out the regular-season home schedule. Toronto ended 53-28 at Rogers Centre, tying Houston for the AL's best home mark.

The Blue Jays have won four straight and seem to stand a good chance of extending the streak in the opener of this three-game series, considering the Orioles' offensive woes and Chris Tillman's struggles against Toronto's potent lineup.

Toronto has hit .407 with nine home runs in five season meetings with Tillman (10-11, 5.16), who's 0-4 with a 15.50 ERA in those matchups. Kevin Pillar is 5 for 10 with three homers against him, Ryan Goins is 5 for 6, Donaldson is 4 for 11 with a homer and Edwin Encarnacion is 4 for 9 with a home run this season.

Jose Bautista, who homered three times in the Tampa Bay series, has three in 36 career at-bats against Tillman.

Tillman had been struggling regardless of the opponent before allowing three runs in six innings in Wednesday's 4-3 win at Washington. He had been 0-4 with a 7.76 ERA over his previous six starts, including a 10-4 loss at Toronto Sept. 6 in which he surrendered three homers and six runs in three-plus innings.

Baltimore (76-79) also has room for improvement from a lineup mired in a 28-inning scoreless drought. The Orioles mustered two extra-base hits and 12 overall while being swept at Boston, the first time they've been shut out in three straight since July 29-31, 1957.

"Sometimes you've got to tip your cap to the pitchers. "They had us off-balance the entire series," said outfielder Adam Jones, who went 1 for 4 in Sunday's 2-0 loss after missing five straight games with back spasms. "We hit balls hard right at guys, just nothing to show for it. It happens like that."

The Orioles draw another challenge Monday against Marco Estrada (13-8, 3.13), who is 3-1 with a 2.32 ERA in his past five road starts.

The right-hander is 6-2 with a 2.51 ERA over his last 11 outings, allowing two runs over 6 2-3 innings before leaving without a decision in a 6-4 loss to the Yankees on Tuesday.

He's 2-1 with a 3.18 ERA in three 2015 starts against Baltimore, permitting three runs in five innings in the lone loss May 11 at Camden Yards. Estrada allowed two runs and two hits in five innings when opposing Tillman Sept. 6.