August 06, 2014

Though May has been mostly rough for the Oakland Athletics, they have a chance to conclude the month on a roll.

The A's look for a fourth consecutive victory Tuesday night against the visiting Minnesota Twins.

Oakland (23-29) opened the month by losing 10 of 12 before winning four in a row. The A's followed that winning streak by dropping seven of eight before their current three-game run.

With Monday's 3-2 victory over Minnesota (15-35), Oakland has recorded six of its 10 May victories at home. Jed Lowrie had two hits and scored the go-ahead run in the sixth inning as the A's snapped the Twins' four-game winning streak.

With a leadoff homer, Coco Crisp is batting .310 with seven RBIs in his last seven games for Oakland. The 36-year-old outfielder has started 15 consecutive games - his longest stretch since 2014.

''It's easy for me having a guy like that, who plays all-out, who plays hard all the time,'' manager Bob Melvin said. ''For some of the new guys coming in, this is how we play."

After Rich Hill and Kendall Graveman each allowed two runs in the past two games, Eric Surkamp (0-3, 6.55 ERA) will be recalled from Triple-A Nashville to make a sixth start in his third stint with Oakland this season. Replacing Zach Neal in the rotation, Surkamp made his last major league appearance May 11 at Boston.

The left-hander gave up three of his four runs over 2 2/3 innings on a homer to Jackie Bradley Jr. in the 13-3 defeat.

Despite that outing, Melvin sees potential in Surkamp.

"He's done well at times here," Melvin told MLB's official website. "When we talk about pitching depth, he's definitely one of the guys we consider in that mix as far as starters go."

Surkamp allowed four runs in four innings of relief over four 2014 contests against the Twins, but this will be his first start against them.

Joe Mauer went 11 for 25 with four home runs and seven RBIs in six games prior to going 0 for 3 with a walk Monday.

Teammate Danny Santana had two hits in three at-bats, but was placed on the disabled list following Monday's game because of a hamstring strain. Byron Buxton will be called up to replace Santana, who landed on the DL last month with the same injury.

''It sucks,'' said Santana, who has batted .381 in his last five games at Oakland. ''You don't want this to happen to anybody.''

Buxton struggled in his first stint with Minnesota this season, batting .156 with two RBIs in 17 games before he was sent to the minors April 24.

Trevor Plouffe has not started the past three games for the Twins because of a bruised knee, but could be in the lineup after seeing action off the bench Monday. He is 3 for 28 in his last eight contests.

In his first four starts since being called up from Triple-A Rochester on April 24, Minnesota's Tyler Duffey (2-3, 3.93) posted a 1.85 ERA despite going 1-2. While splitting his last two, the right-hander was tagged for 11 runs and 18 hits in 12 1/3 innings.

Duffey last took the mound Wednesday when he allowed five of those runs in the fourth of the 6 2/3 innings he lasted of a 7-5 win over Kansas City.

This will be his first appearance against the A's.

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