BALTIMORE (AP) — The Baltimore Orioles insist they're not watching the scoreboard. They say they're concentrating on the last-place Toronto Blue Jays.
They will need to concentrate harder.
On Tuesday night, the Orioles lost for the second straight game, 4-0 to the Blue Jays.
Baltimore remained 1 1-2 games behind first-place New York in the AL East. The Yankees lost 5-4 at Minnesota.
After Boston's loss, Adam Jones said it was vital to ignore the Yankees.
"Trying to get more runs on our scoreboard," Jones said.
For the first time since Aug. 3, Baltimore was shut out as Aaron Laffey and five relievers combined on a six-hitter.
Laffey (4-6) allowed five singles in 5 2-3 innings and won his first game since Aug. 5. He had been winless in his previous six starts. He neither walked nor struck out a batter.
"Honestly, he's running on fumes. His stuff is not as sharp and crisp, but you can't take anything away from what he did tonight. He's gone out there on really some guile tonight," Toronto manager John Farrell said.
Relievers Steve Delabar, Brett Cecil, Brandon Lyon, Darren Oliver and Casey Janssen combined to allow one hit — Chris Davis' seventh-inning double — in 3 1-3 innings.
The Orioles loaded the bases in the ninth on an error and two walks, but Ryan Flaherty flied out on the first pitch of his at-bat to end the game.
"He's the tying run there," manager Buck Showalter said. "He just missed that ball, hitting it out of the ballpark."
On Monday, Baltimore and Toronto split a doubleheader, with the Blue Jays winning the second game 9-5. The Orioles had just four runners in scoring position.
Baltimore leads the season series 10-7 with one game remaining on Wednesday.
"You're always going to get everyone's best shot and when we had been struggling and we'd go into certain venues where there's a good emotion in the ballpark, it feeds the other team as well as us," Showalter said.
The Orioles had won seven of their previous nine.
"We got to get some wins. That's what we've been doing since the first day of spring training. Now, we're just in a position where each game matters. It's a cool position to be in," Jones said.