Twins aim for series win over Astros

After a thrilling contest to start the weekend series, the Houston Astros and Minnesota Twins collide once again at Target Field on Saturday afternoon.

Brian Dozier was the hero of the night on Friday as he carried the Twins to a 4-3 win in 13 innings to kick off the three-game set. Dozier hit an RBI single to tie the contest and force extra innings in the bottom of the ninth inning. He then hit another RBI single that won the game in the 13th.

Samuel Deduno went six innings and allowed just a pair of runs in making the start for the Twins but did not factor in the decision. Ryan Pressly pitched two scoreless innings to earn the win, which ended a four-game losing streak for Minnesota.

Matt Dominguez went 2-for-5 and hit an RBI single in top of the ninth inning that gave Houston a 3-2 lead. Josh Fields walked a batter in the bottom of the inning and then Chia-Jen Lo allowed Dozier's RBI single that sent the game to extra innings. Dallas Keuchel gave up the game-winning hit after pitching 1 2/3 innings of relief to take the loss.

Houston has now lost four of its last five contests.

Erik Bedard will look to continue to bring his ERA back down to a respectable number and perhaps pick up a win when he starts for Houston on Saturday.

The journeyman left-hander has dropped his ERA from 4.67 near the beginning of July to 4.28 to end the month. Bedard lasted just five innings in his most recent start but he allowed just a single run. Unfortunately, the Houston offense couldn't get anything going and Bedard was on the hook for the loss.

Bedard now has a record of 3-8 this season and has lost each of his last five starts.

This season Bedard has yet to pitch against the Twins. In his 10-year career, that has included stops at five different teams, Bedard has gone 2-5 with a 3.90 ERA in 13 total starts against the Twins.

Minnesota will send a rookie to the mound on Saturday when Kyle Gibson makes his sixth career start.

Gibson was taken 22nd overall in the 2009 amateur draft by the Twins out of the University of Missouri. Gibson spent the last few seasons in the minor leagues before finally getting called up on June 29.

Gibson has had some struggles early on as he enters play sporting a 2-3 record and a 6.21 ERA through six starts. With such a short time at the major league level, Gibson has not yet faced Houston.

The most recent of those starts came against Seattle. Gibson managed to last just five innings while allowing five runs on seven hits in taking his third loss. Gibson had been turning things around prior to that outing as he allowed just two earned runs in each of his previous two starts.

Houston won two of three meetings with Minnesota back in 2009.