Basketball: Ortiz keeps the Red Sox on front foot in pursuit of Yankees

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The Independent Online

The Boston slugger David Ortiz hit a home run to tie the game then singled in the winning run in a 5-4 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays at Fenway Park, keeping the Red Sox one game behind the New York Yankees in the American League East standings.

The win sets up an enticing season-ending three-game series showdown for the AL East crown, as the Yankees arrived in Boston yesterday with a wafer-thin lead thanks to an 8-4 decision over the Baltimore Orioles. It was the Yankees' 15th victory in 18 games.

"We have work to do," the Yankees manager Joe Torre said of the series with the Red Sox to decide the division champions. "Three games to go and we hold our future in our hands. We couldn't be going in under any better circumstances."

The Chicago White Sox clinched the AL Central title with a 4-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers and their divisional rivals the Cleveland Indians stayed in the hunt for the wild card with a 6-0 shut-out of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

The Indians are tied with the Red Sox with three games remaining in the regular season.

In Oakland, the AL West champion Los Angeles Angels dumped the Athletics 7-1.