Young's HR in 9th boosts A's over AstrosMay 25, 2013 - 7:23 AM Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Chris Young's three-run home run in the ninth inning lifted the Oakland Athletics to a 6-5 win over the Houston Astros in the opener of a three-game series at Minute Maid Park.
Down 5-3, with Jose Veras (0-3) pitching for the Astros, pinch-hitter John Jaso drew a walk. Veras struck out Eric Sogard, but walked Coco Crisp. Young then hammered a 1-1 pitch deep into the stands in left to give Oakland its sixth win in seven games.
"We had some good at-bats in the ninth. Jaso walked, and then Coco walked and one swing of the bat puts you ahead," A's manager Bob Melvin said.
Pat Neshek (1-0) pitched a scoreless eighth and Grant Balfour escaped trouble in the ninth to notch his 10th save.
Seth Smith had a solo home run while Yoenis Cespedes and Luke Montz drove in one run apiece for the Athletics. Starter Tommy Milone gave up five runs on eight hits over seven innings.
J.D. Martinez smashed a three-run homer, Matt Dominguez hit a solo shot and Jose Altuve had an RBI for the Astros. Starter Erik Bedard allowed two runs on four hits and four walks in five frames.
"Every time you go up there you have the confidence that you're going to hit the ball hard. I think that's how guys get hot. When you're hitting the ball hard two or three times a game, that's building confidence," Martinez said.
Oakland scored two runs in the first. Crisp drew a walk to start the game, advanced to second on a single by Young and reached home on Cespedes' single to center. After Josh Donaldson was hit by a pitch, Young scored on a fielder's choice by Montz.
The Astros rallied to score five runs in the fifth, Dominguez homered to start the surge. Ronny Cedeno and Robbie Grossman connected on back-to-back singles before Altuve delivered an RBI single. Martinez followed with his three-run blast to left.
Smith, who pinch-hit for Montz, homered to begin the sixth.
Balfour came on to pitch in the ninth. He walked Dominguez and pinch-hitter Jason Castro with one out, but got Grossman to strike out and Altuve to hit a grounder towards the shortstop to end the game.
Veras came into the game having thrown seven no-hit innings in his last seven appearances ... Young has a 15-game hitting streak against Houston, dating back to Aug. 8, 2011 ... Balfour has converted each of his last 28 save opportunities. His last blown save was on April 29, 2012, in Baltimore ... Seven of the last eight Astros contests have been decided by two runs or less.
- OAKLAND: 6
May 24 11:32 PM
- Chris Young one-out, three-run Home Run (5) to left scored John Jaso and Coco Crisp. Yoenis Cespedes due up.
Athletics 6, Astros 5 Top 9, 1 OutMay 24 11:12 PM
- Pinch-Hitter Seth Smith lead-off Home Run (5) to left. Nate Freiman due up.
Athletics 3, Astros 5 Top 6, 0 OutsMay 24 10:05 PM
- J.D. Martinez two-out, three-run Home Run (5) to left scored Robbie Grossman and Jose Altuve. Carlos Corporan due up.
Athletics 2, Astros 5 Bot 5, 2 OutsMay 24 9:56 PM
- Jose Altuve single to center scored Ronny Cedeno with two outs. On the play, Robbie Grossman advances to third. Runners on first and third and J.D. Martinez due up.
Athletics 2, Astros 2 Bot 5, 2 OutsMay 24 9:54 PM
- Matt Dominguez two-out, solo Home Run (5) to left. Ronny Cedeno due up.
Athletics 2, Astros 1 Bot 5, 2 OutsMay 24 9:49 PM
- Luke Montz grounded into a fielder's choice, first to short scored Chris Young with two outs. Josh Donaldson out at second, Yoenis Cespedes advances to third. Runners on first and third and Nate Freiman due up.
Athletics 2, Astros 0 Top 1, 2 OutsMay 24 8:28 PM
- Yoenis Cespedes single to center scored Coco Crisp with none out. On the play, Chris Young advances to second. Runners on first and second and Josh Donaldson due up.
Athletics 1, Astros 0 Top 1, 0 OutsMay 24 8:20 PM
- OAKLAND: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
May 24 8:11 PM
- Orioles-Astros Preview May 23
- Athletics-Mariners Preview May 23
- LEADING OFF: Kershaw tests streak vs Reds, Colon faces Nats May 23
- Ejections aplenty for Blue Jays lately May 23
- Baseball Capsules May 22
- Bad day gets worse for Athletics in 5-4 loss to Yankees May 22
- Pineda ends slump; Yanks top Oakland 5-4 to win 5th straight May 22
- Hamels fans 11, Rangers down Keuchel, Astros 9-2 for sweep May 22
- Gray put on DL by A's because of strained muscle May 22
- Rangers-Astros Preview May 21
- Andrus, Ramos lead Rangers over Astros 2-1 May 21
- Yankees-Athletics Preview May 21