Astros rely on Cosart in middle tilt with Twins

Rookie right-hander Jarred Cosart tries again to pick up his second career victory on Tuesday night when the Houston Astros host the Minnesota Twins in the second test of a three-game series at Minute Maid Park.

The 23-year-old made a scintillating big league debut on July 12 against Tampa Bay, where he pitched eight innings of scoreless two-hit ball while earning a 2-1 victory.

He allowed two runs or fewer in each of his next five starts, but failed to pick up a victory as Houston went just 2-3 in those outings while scoring a combined 16 runs.

Cosart was touched for three runs for the first time in dropping a 4-2 decision at Texas on Aug. 20, and gave up one run on seven hits in six innings in a no-decision as the Astros fell, 6-1, at the Chicago White Sox on Aug. 28.

Overall, his earned run average stands at 1.59 and he's allowed 39 hits and nine earned runs in 51 innings.

He tossed seven innings of five-hit, one-run ball in a lone meeting with the Twins on Aug. 2 in Minnesota, getting a no-decision in a game Houston lost, 4-3.

For the Twins, second-year lefty Pedro Hernandez faces the Astros for the first time in his eighth start of the season and ninth of his career.

The 24-year-old was a 5-3 winner at Cleveland in his most recent outing on June 23 at Cleveland, where he allowed two runs on three hits in five innings of work.

He returns to the majors to take the rotation slot of Samuel Deduno, who's shelved with a shoulder injury.

Hernandez was signed by the San Diego Padres as an amateur free agent in 2006 before going to the Chicago White Sox via trade in 2011 and to Minnesota a year later via another trade.

On Monday, Chris Colabello slugged two home runs, including his first career grand slam in the ninth inning, to lift the Twins to a 10-6 come-from-behind win over the Astros.

Tied at 6-6 heading into the final frame, the Twins loaded the bases off Chia- Jen Lo (0-3) on an infield single from Brian Dozier and Doug Bernier and Chris Herrmann walks, leading to Colabello's blast over the wall in right.

Trevor Plouffe and Dozier each homered for Minnesota, with the former picking up three hits and a walk in four plate appearances.

Josh Roenicke (3-1) earned the win with two scoreless innings of relief. Jose Altuve went 4-for-5 despite the loss, which gives Houston six in its last seven games.

The Twins swept a three-game series with the Astros in Minnesota from Aug. 2-4 and held a 14-9 lead in the all-time series between the teams entering the week.