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OAKLAND, Calif. -- Yoenis Cespedes homered twice and tied a career high with five RBIs before leaving with an apparent right thumb injury, and the Oakland Athletics held off the Houston Astros 9-7 on Wednesday night. The two-time reigning Home Run Derby champion hit a three-run drive in the second inning and a two-run shot in the fourth off Brad Peacock (3-7) for his 15th and 16th homers this season. Cespedes snapped a 25-game skid -- matching his career high -- since his last long ball June 19 against Boston. Cespedes was replaced in left field with the As leading 8-1 in the seventh. But the Astros almost pulled off an improbable comeback, scoring five runs in the eighth before the back of Oaklands bullpen shut them down. Jesse Chavez (8-6) allowed two runs and four hits in 5 2-3 innings to help the As (62-38) extend the best record in baseball. He struck out seven and walked two. Struggling reliever Jim Johnson gave up four runs -- three earned -- without recording an out to spark Houstons five-run eighth. He left to a smattering of boos again. Luke Gregerson stranded two runners on base in the eighth, and Sean Doolittle recorded his 15th save in 18 tries with a perfect ninth. Chavez, who had not started since July 12 at Seattle before the All-Star break, looked sharp at the outset. He did not allow a hit until Matt Dominguez lined a single to left with one out in the fifth. The As got all the support they needed in just three swings. Jed Lowrie led off Oaklands second with his fifth homer, and Cespedes busted the game open by sending a slider from Peacock over the wall in centre. In the fourth, Cespedes pulled a curveball into the stands in left to put the As up 7-0. It was Cespedes fifth career two-homer game and first since June 4 at the New York Yankees. It also was the third time hes had five RBIs in a game -- all this year. Peacock, who was traded to Houston in February 2013 as part of the deal that landed Lowrie in Oakland, was charged with seven runs and seven hits in 3 2-3 innings. The As built leads of 8-1 and 9-2 but still had a few scares late. Cespedes had his right thumb examined by a team trainer after grounding out on an awkward swing in the fifth. He stayed in the game before Craig Gentry replaced him in left field to start the seventh. First baseman Brandon Moss had his left hand looked at by a trainer after Jose Altuve ran through his tag on a misfired throw, jarring the ball loose, and Johnson -- who signed a $10 million, one-year deal with Oakland after leading the AL with 50 saves for Baltimore last season -- helped turn a runaway game into a tight one. NOTES: Athletics INF Alberto Callaspo (right hamstring) could begin a rehab assignment in the next day or so and come off the disabled list Sunday. ... The Astros placed rookie OF George Springer on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left quadriceps and recalled outfielder Marc Krauss from Triple-A Oklahoma City. ... The As said they raised $29,189 for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation during the teams annual Root Beer Float Day, bringing the 15-year total to more than $414,000. ... Jeff Samardzija (1-1, 3.27 ERA) takes the mound for Oakland against Scott Feldman (4-7, 4.30 ERA) and the Astros in Thursdays series finale. Vapormax 97 Black Reflect . "There are a lot of things that are going very well in this organization. Im not coming in here to rip things apart," Nicholson told reporters Friday. "I know what Hockey Canada was when I started, and I know where this (Oilers) organization is today. Nike Vapormax Wholesale China .C. - Alberta prop Andrew Tiedemann will captain Canada against Uruguay on Friday, the opening day of competition at the IRB Americas Rugby Championship. http://www.vapormaxcheapoutlet.com/vapormax-flyknit-3/vapormax-flyknit-3-barely-volt.html . At this point, even he isnt sure when it is going to stop. The right-hander dropped his fourth straight decision in Los Angeles 6-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday night, leaving his status very much in doubt as the Dodgers prepare for the stretch drive. Vapormax Plus Outlet . Toronto ended an 0-4-0 skid with Sundays shootout win over visiting New Jersey, but the club could have a difficult time making it two victories in a row tonight. The Maple Leafs have dropped three straight and 11 of the last 12 regular- season meetings against Boston overall and the Bruins have claimed six straight in Beantown. Vapormax Flyknit 3 White And Black .Y. - Lou Williams scored 21 points and the Toronto Raptors beat New York 81-76 on Monday night in the Knicks preseason home opener.MANCHESTER, England -- The Premier League trophy could be out of reach for Manchester City after a 2-2 home draw with last-placed Sunderland on Wednesday that capped a demoralizing four days for title chasers. Samir Nasris 88th-minute equalizer at Etihad Stadium will be of little consolation to City, which is now six points behind league leader Liverpool and four points behind second-place Chelsea. Third-place City has a game in hand but the surprise result against Sunderland, coupled with Sundays 3-2 loss at Liverpool, may be a setback too far in its bid for a second championship in three seasons. "I think we are more mentally tired than physically tired," said City manager Manuel Pellegrini, who is still not giving up hope. "Remember this team, two years ago, were six points behind the leaders and ... won the title at the end. So it is difficult, but it is not the last game we play." Pressure also seems to have struck Evertons battle for the last Champions League spot with Arsenal. Everton became the latest team to slip up against Crystal Palace, losing 3-2 at home to end its seven-match winning run and miss the chance of reclaiming fourth place from Arsenal, which is one point ahead with four matches remaining. "We wanted to win so much that we stopped being ourselves," Everton manager Roberto Martinez said, "and that is what we have to learn from." Palaces fourth straight win means the side can surely start preparing for another season in the top flight and lends further weight to many pundits argument that Tony Pulis is the manager of the season. When Pulis took over in November, Palace was bottom and six points from safety -- now, it is 11th and 10 points above the relegattion zone.dddddddddddd Sunderland is six points from safety with a game in hand, but could have been a lot closer if goalkeeper Vito Mannone had gathered Nasris shot rather than fumbled it into the back of the net. That could be the difference between staying in the Premier League and being relegated. "Its one more blow," Sunderland manager Gus Poyet said. "I tell you what, Im testing my heart this year." Without the injured David Silva and Yaya Toure and with star striker Sergio Aguero lacking match sharpness, City lacked its usual creativity going forward and was sloppy in possession. Fernandinho gave City the lead in the second minute, running onto a short pass from Aguero that was dummied by Alvaro Negredo and scoring inside Mannones near post, but Sunderland had the better of the chances for the rest of the first half. Connor Wickham finally took one of them in the 73rd minute, volleying in a cross from substitute Emanuele Giaccherini, and the same players combined for Wickhams second that came on the counter-attack in the 83rd. City escaped with a point thanks to Nasri, but Liverpool and Chelsea will be celebrating another twist in the title race. "We believe we can win the title," Fernandinho said. "Chelsea and Liverpool have four games and they may drop some points -- we think we can still win the title." At Goodison Park, Jason Puncheon scored his fourth goal in three games before Scott Dann added a second for Palace for a 2-0 lead after 49 minutes. Substitute Steven Naismith reduced the deficit in the 61st before Palace restored their two-goal advantage through striker Cameron Jerome in the 73rd. Kevin Mirallas scored Evertons second goal in the 86th. ' ' '