Snell took a no-hit bid into the seventh inning and got his major league-leading 19th win, leading the Rays over the Cleveland Indians 3-1 on Wednesday.
"I know that we're winning and that's the most important thing," Snell said. "That's what I'm focused on, that's what we're focused on. All the individual stuff I'll look at later."
Snell (19-5) lost his bid when Jose Ramirez led off the seventh with his 38th homer. Snell won his team-record seventh straight start, striking out nine and walking two in seven innings. He has allowed two earned runs or fewer in 16 consecutive home starts.
The Rays are 8 1/2 games behind Oakland for the second AL wild card with 17 left. The Athletics routed Baltimore on Wednesday night and open a three-game series at Tampa Bay on Friday night.
Snell's ERA dropped to 2.03, second in the AL behind Boston's Chris Sale at 1.96. Snell's 1.24 ERA at home is best in the majors.
"He's got the whole package," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "He's got velocity, breaking ball, changeup, and seeing how much he's improved from one year to the next, that's pretty special stuff."
Cleveland's magic number to clinch a third consecutive AL Central title remained at three.
Ji-Man Choi hit a two-run homer in the first off Carlos Carrasco (16-9), then took a well-inside pitch from Carrasco in the sixth and briefly stared at the mound. Choi hit a winning homer off Brad Hand in the ninth inning on Monday night.
"Every at-bat I can hit a home run you feel great, especially today helping to contribute to a win for Snell," Choi said through a translator.
Cleveland's Edwin Encarnacion stared and shook his head after a high and inside pitch from Snell in the fourth.
"It was nothing," Encarnacion said. "No hard feelings. He tried to go inside. No problem."
Carrasco (16-9) gave up three runs and six hits in seven innings.
Josh Donaldson, acquired by Cleveland from Toronto on Aug. 31, hit into a double play as a pinch-hitter in the eighth. He went 0 for 4 Tuesday in his Cleveland debut, his first big league game since May 28.
Tommy Pham extended his career-best hitting streak to 16 games with a two-out infield single in the first and scored on Choi's drive to center field.
Indians: Donaldson is to start at third base on Friday.
Rays: CF Kevin Kiermaier didn't provide details for what the team called a "general illness" that kept him out the lineup the previous two games. "Time to rest really helped," said Kiermaier, who had a fourth-inning sacrifice fly and tripled during the sixth.
Ramirez's homer was his first since Aug. 17, ending an 88 at-bat drought. ... Tampa Bay OF Mallex Smith stole two bases and has 33 overall. ... The game was played in 2 hours, 20 minutes.
Indians: RHP Mike Tomlin (1-5) is to face Detroit LHP Matthew Boyd (9-12) on Friday night.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/tag/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports
MLB All-Stars pick up first win over Japan
Yadier Molina and J.T. Realmuto both homered Sunday to lead the MLB All-Stars to a 7-3 win over Japan for their first win of the six-game exhibition series.
NL Central offseason preview: Can the Brewers do it again?
Milwaukee seems due for some regression, the Cubs don't figure to throw money at their problems and the Cardinals might be looking to add some star power.
Nobody's more valuable than Mike Trout, but will he be MVP?
Whether or not the Angels superstar wins his third MVP award, his impact on the game transcends any trophy.
Justin Verlander, Kate Upton announce birth of daughter
Justin Verlander and wife Kate Upton welcomed a daughter, Genevieve Upton Verlander, on Wednesday.
Red Sox broadcaster Jerry Remy says he's cancer-free
Boston Red Sox television analyst Jerry Remy tweeted Friday that he is currently cancer-free after being diagnosed with the disease again in August.
Report: Nats ownership struck down Bryce Harper-to-Astros deal at deadline
The proposed deal would have sent three minor league Astros prospects to the Nationals in exchange for Bryce Harper, The Athletic reported Saturday.