Adam Jones has waited his entire career to be in a pennant race, and he's making the most of it.
Jones went 4 for 4 with a homer and two RBI, and the Baltimore Orioles moved within a half-game of the AL East lead with a 4-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday in the opener of a doubleheader.
Ryan Flaherty hit a solo shot for the Orioles, who matched the division-leading New York Yankees in the win column (88). New York was scheduled to play at Minnesota on Monday night.
The victory also solidified Baltimore's grasp on the top AL wild-card slot over Oakland.
Jones' four hits tied a career high. He has hit safely in 18 of 22 games in September, with six home runs and 13 RBI.
''Adam relishes competition,'' Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. ''He's obviously had a heck of a year. He's turning into quite a player.''
Asked if Jones deserves consideration for AL MVP, Showalter replied, ''This team, we haven't really thought about that type of stuff yet. That will be fodder...