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      Avila's blast lifts Tigers over Astros

      Alex Avila hit a two-run home run in the ninth inning, lifting the Detroit Tigers to a 4-3 win over the Houston Astros on Friday night.

      After Houston closer Jose Veras (0-2) walked Don Kelly to open the inning, Avila hit a 3-1 pitch to deep center field and help the Tigers get their second straight win.

      Jose Altuve's RBI single in the seventh inning capped a three-run rally and gave the Astros a 3-2 lead.

      Houston, which has the worst record in the American League, lost its fourth in a row and eighth in the last nine games.

      Tigers left-hander Drew Smyly (2-0) pitched two scoreless innings for the win, and Jose Valverde finished the ninth against his former team for his third save in three chances.