A’s take series over Astros with more late-inning heroics

HOUSTON — Any reservations about the A’s being a legit team can be laid to rest. They’re good.

After taking two out of three from the Indians this past weekend, the A’s mounted another late-inning comeback in Thursday’s 6-4 victory over the Astros to take three out of four from the defending world series champions in their own house and make it two-straight series wins over first place teams.

The A’s are currently the hottest team in baseball, having won 19 of their last 24. As they’ve done so often over that stretch, the game-winning runs came in the eighth inning off the bat off Mark Canha, who smacked a go-ahead two-run double to left off Chris Devenski. It was the 10th time in their last 23 victories the A’s have scored the game-winning run in the eighth inning or later, with their 69 runs scored in the eighth inning this season the most in the majors.

Canha’s clutch hit came shortly after Matt Chapman’s game-tying double to left earlier in the inning, capping off the comeback from what was a 4-0 deficit after just three innings.

Though the A’s have become known for their power, especially on the road as their 82 road homers lead the majors, they’ve also been impressively patient at the plate. They drew 20 walks against Astros pitchers this series, a key to producing early exits from the many tough arms in Houston’s starting rotation.

“They’re a good lineup. Work counts, swing at strikes, and usually take balls,” Astros manager AJ Hinch said after Wednesday’s game. “That’s one of the reasons they’ve been one of the hottest teams in MLB. It’s kinda their calling card, and when they do it right, the at-bats never seem to end.”

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Source:: The Mercury News – Sports


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