National League Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, September 5th (All times Eastern)
Houston Astros (42-94) at Pittsburgh Pirates (71-64), 7:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Houston - Fernando Abad (0-2, 4.83) Pittsburgh - Kevin Correia (9-8, 4.40)
(Sports Network) - Pittsburgh's Kevin Correia takes aim at his first victory in nearly a month, one that would give his Pirates a series victory over the Houston Astros on Wednesday night in the final contest of a three-game series.
Correia is winless since Aug. 8, dropping two decisions in five appearances since while shuffling from the rotation to the bullpen. He gets the start for this finale in place of Jeff Karstens, who has a strained hip flexor.
The right-handed Correia's last start came on Aug. 20 when he lost to the San Diego Padres. He yielded three runs -- two earned -- on seven hits in 4 1/3 innings.
He has pitched twice in relief since -- both against the Milwaukee Brewers -- yielding a run over 6 1/3 combined innings.
Correia, 32, is 9-8 with a 4.40 earned run average in 26 games (22 starts) this season and has gone 1-1 with a 4.53 ERA in 11 lifetime meetings with the Astros, including six starts.
The Pirates drew even in this series, and remained 2 1/2 games back of a wild card spot, with Tuesday's 6-2 win that was fueled by four hits and three runs batted in from Andrew McCutchen.
Brock Holt added four hits and scored twice in his fourth career game, while former Astro Wandy Rodriguez earned a win against his former team by yielding just four hits over seven scoreless innings while fanning seven.
"It's very special for me because I played for the Astros for a long time," said Rodriguez, who spent the first seven-plus years of his career in Houston.
The Pirates snapped a four-game slide, while the Astros lost for the eighth time in 10 games as Jordan Lyles surrendered five runs -- four earned -- on seven hits and a walk in 4 2/3 innings.
Brett Wallace and Chris Snyder each drove in a run off Pittsburgh's bullpen in the eighth inning.
"They have a nice team over there. They have a couple of veterans with some young kids mixed in," Astros interim manager Tony DeFrancesco said of the Pirates.
Former reliever Fernando Abad gets the start tonight for the Astros looking for his first win of the season and second of his career.
Following 81 relief outings to begin his career, including 30 this season, the 26-year-old Abad has made two straight starts and lost both. That includes a rough outing versus the Cincinnati Reds on Friday as he was tagged for six runs on nine hits over 4 1/3 frames of a 9-3 defeat. Five of the runs he gave up came on a pair of home runs.
The lefty is 0-2 with a 4.83 ERA on the season and 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA lifetime in eight relief outings against Pittsburgh.
The Pirates have won 10 of 13 versus the Astros this season, including seven of nine at home.
09/05 10:24:28 ET