Athletics-Astros Preview

The Associated Press

A late home run by Houston native Chris Young helped the Oakland Athletics continue their winning streak against the Astros.

A.J. Griffin will try to extend that run to 10 when Oakland also goes for a seventh consecutive victory at Houston on Saturday night.

Oakland (26-23) opened this series with a 6-5 victory Friday. Young's three-run homer in the ninth inning was the difference as the A's improved to 12-1 all-time against the newest member of the AL.

Oakland, winner of six of seven overall, is undefeated against Houston (14-34) since a 5-4, 11-inning road loss June 12, 2007.

Young, acquired from Arizona in the offseason, has played in 10 straight road wins over the Astros and 14 in a row overall versus his hometown team.

"Mom's cooking definitely has something to do with it for sure,'' said the veteran outfielder, who owns a 15-game hitting streak against Houston and is a .418 hitter in 19 games at Minute Maid Park.

Griffin (4-3, 3.59 ERA) will try to keep the A's rolling after pitching six innings and allowing three runs in a 4-3 home win over Kansas City on Sunday. The right-hander did not get a decision after walking three - matching his total from his previous three starts - and told the A's official website that it left "a sore taste in my mouth."

The A's overcame his career-high four walks in a 4-3 home win over Houston on April 16. Griffin set down the final 11 hitters he faced in that contest, throwing six innings giving up two runs with eight strikeouts.

The Astros continue their eight-game homestand with Lucas Harrell (3-5, 4.63) going for his first win in five starts. Houston has lost the right-hander's last four outings, though he gave up one run in seven innings of a 1-0 loss at Pittsburgh on Sunday.

Harrell, who allowed a homer to Pedro Alvarez, hadn't gotten past the fifth in four outings.

He wasn't nearly that good in a 9-3 home loss to Oakland on April 7, giving up eight runs, allowing three homers and walking five in 4 1-3 innings.

One of the home runs was hit by Coco Crisp, who could return Saturday after missing two games with a bruised right foot.

"If I wake up tomorrow and feel ready to go, I'm playing," he said.

Astros third baseman Matt Dominguez's solo shot Friday gave him five homers - his season total - in his last 11 games.

J.D. Martinez struck out twice and went hitless in three at-bats off Griffin last month. Martinez, though, has three consecutive two-hit games and has homered in the last two.

The A's, 3-1 on a six-game trip, have won four of six on the road after dropping a season-worst five straight there.

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