Australian-born right-hander Liam Hendriks aims for a second straight win on Wednesday afternoon when the Minnesota Twins visit Minute Maid Park for the finale of a three-game series with the Houston Astros.
The 24-year-old was 0-2 in his initial four starts of the season and had posted a 6.20 earned run average through 20 1/3 innings before breaking through for a 3-2 win at Texas on Aug. 30.
In that game, Hendriks gave up an earned run on five hits in six innings while walking three batters, striking out two and throwing 97 pitches.
Hendriks, whose five starts this season have all come on the road, has never faced the Astros.
Houston starts 22-year-old righty Jordan Lyles, who picked up a save on Aug. 26 against the Chicago White Sox before returning three days later for a loss against Seattle.
The save was the first in the brief career of Lyles, who's made 61 starts in 68 big league outings since debuting with Houston in 2011.
He pitched to one batter to finish the game against Chicago, then allowed three runs on four hits in six innings in a 3-2 loss to the Mariners.
Lyles, who has never faced the Twins, is 4-5 in 12 home starts in 2013.
On Tuesday, Darin Mastroianni hit a two-run double in a three-run 12th inning, as Minnesota fought off Houston, 9-6.
Mastroianni ended up with three hits and three RBI, Brian Dozier and Trevor Plouffe each hit a two-run homer and Alex Presley added two his with a run driven in for the Twins, who have won the first two in the set and four of five overall.
Caleb Thielbar (3-2) fanned two in a scoreless 11th for the win, while Josh Roenicke earned his first save despite walking two in the home 12th.
Brandon Barnes did all he could to keep his team alive, going 3-for-4 with a a two-run single and game-tying three-run homer in the ninth, while Chris Carter added a solo shot for the Astros,
Kevin Chapman (0-1) was touched for all three runs on as many hits in the top of the 12th.
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.