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HOUSTON — Chicago White Sox starter Lance Lynn had his shortest outing of the season Saturday in a 7-3 loss to the Houston Astros in front of 35,210 at Minute Maid Park.

Lynn allowed six runs (five earned) on eight hits with six strikeouts and a walk in four innings. The right-hander hadn’t given up more than three runs in a start this season. The Astros used a four-run third inning Saturday to distance themselves and hand the Sox their third straight loss.

The Astros broke a 1-all tie when Michael Brantley knocked in Jose Altuve with a single in the third. Robel García had the key hit of the inning, driving in three with a double over the head of right fielder Leury García to make it 5-1.

Brantley struck again an inning later with a two-out RBI double to left.

Lynn exited after throwing 84 pitches. Saturday marked the first time he failed to pitch at least five innings since his debut with the Sox on April 3 at the Los Angeles Angels when he lasted 4 2/3.

Framber Valdez allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits with five strikeouts and two walks in seven innings for the Astros. Andrew Vaughn hit a solo home run off Valdez in the seventh.

Vaughn returned to the lineup after leaving Friday’s game in the eighth because of a facial contusion, an injury that occurred when he doubled in the sixth and the throw from right bounced and hit him in the face.

Sox reliever José Ruiz left Saturday’s game with two outs in the eighth with with discomfort in his right knee. He is being evaluated.

Yoán Moncada had two hits and an RBI, and Yasmani Grandal singled twice for the Sox, who remain 3 1/2 games ahead of second-place Cleveland in the American League Central.

They’ll attempt to avoid being swept Sunday when Dallas Keuchel starts against his former team for the first time in his career.