Houston ace Bud Norris tries to avoid a four-game sweep on Sunday when the Astros visit Fenway Park for the finale of a weekend series with the Boston Red Sox.
The hosts won their third straight over Houston on Saturday, when Felix Doubront pitched into the seventh inning and David Ortiz continued his prolific start to the season at the plate by driving in three runs in an 8-4 Boston triumph.
Doubront (3-0) gave up four hits and three runs over 6 2/3 innings. The Venezuelan lefty also walked four batters and had eight strikeouts.
Ortiz, who went 2-for-3, has a 19-game hitting streak going back to last season. That is tied for his career-best (July 17 - Aug. 6, 2002 with Minnesota). Ortiz, who was sidelined at the start of this season due to a right Achilles injury, is hitting .519 so far in 2013.
Jacoby Ellsbury hit a two-run single as the Red Sox won their fourth in a row.
Brad Peacock (1-3) allowed six hits and five runs over 3 1/3 innings. He also walked five batters.
Astros manager Bo Porter said changes could be coming to his pitching staff.
"It's been addressed," he said. "It's either adjustments going to be made or we're going to find people who are going to throw strikes."
Norris, who won seven games in 2012, has three of the Astros' seven victories so far in April, including a 3-2 defeat of Seattle in his last start on April 23 - in which he allowed a run on eight hits in five innings.
Previously, he'd split four decisions, defeating Texas and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim while losing twice to the Oakland Athletics.
Norris, who's 12-24 in his career on the road, has never pitched at Fenway Park.
For the Red Sox, Lackey makes his first start since a stint on the 15-day disabled list with sore right biceps.
He opened the season at Toronto on April 6 and allowed two runs in 4 1/3 innings of a 5-0 loss.
Lackey got a no-decision in one career meeting with the Astros after allowing six runs on eight hits in 4 2/3 innings.
He's 20-17 in 44 career starts in Fenway and has a composite 67-44 home record in his career, compared to 61-51 on the road.
The Red Sox swept a three-game series in Houston when the teams last met in 2007.