Usually clubs aren't wild about their opponent changing starting pitchers at the last second.

For the A's on Sunday however the sudden appearance of Lucas Harrell on the mound was no cause for consternation. Oakland likes hitting against the Houston right-hander - and did so again a lot in a 7-2 victory over the Astros. The victory was the A's third in a row and Oakland has won eight of its past 10 games overall to regain the lead in the American League West.

Seth Smith capped the A's seven-run third inning with a three-run homer off Harrell and Smith is now 5 for 7 with six RBIs lifetime vs. Harrell.

All seven of Oakland's runs in the third came with two outs including Brandon Moss' two-run double and RBI singles by Yoenis Cespedes and Daric Barton. The A's batted around in the inning.

The A's have put up 22 hits nine walks four homers and 21 runs in 13 1/3 innings against Harrell this season and lifetime he's given up 28 hits 19 walks and 23 runs in 21 2/3 innings against Oakland.

Paul Clemens Houston's scheduled starter was scratched about an hour before the game with a blister on his right middle finger. He'd only allowed three hits two walks and one run in 7 2/3 career innings vs. Oakland.