Brewers-Astros Preview

The Associated Press

The Houston Astros, who began the weekend having won four times in 38 games, are now in position for their first sweep since May.

However, they haven't had much success against Yovani Gallardo, who takes the mound for the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday trying for his 10th straight victory in this series.

Major league-worst Houston (38-77) had dropped five straight until recording walk-off wins in the first two games of this weekend set, winning 4-3 on Friday before blowing three leads Saturday but prevailing 6-5 in 10 innings on an RBI single by Scott Moore.

"It was nice to do it in back to back nights," said manager Brad Mills, whose club will now aim for its first sweep since taking three games from the Chicago Cubs from May 21-23. "When you don't do it all season and you do it in back to back nights, that's really nice and everyone enjoys it."

Houston would certainly enjoy it if it could finally get the better of Gallardo (10-8, 3.79 ERA).

The right-hander has won nine straight starts versus the Astros and is 12-2 with a 2.61 ERA in his career against them. He has a 0.96 ERA over the last four meetings, including two wins this year.

Gallardo has also given up either one or zero runs in five of his last seven starts overall, including one in each of his last two. He went seven innings against Cincinnati on Monday, allowing six hits in a 6-3 victory.

"He had a good breaking ball," catcher Martin Maldonado said. "He was spotting the fastball where he should be and (had) a good slider."

Gallardo will look to help the Brewers avoid both the sweep and their 12th straight road loss. The 11 consecutive defeats away from home constitutes the club's longest road losing streak since a franchise-worst 17-game skid April 27-June 11, 1970.

Milwaukee (51-61) has given up six or more runs in seven of the 11 losses during the current slide.

The Brewers will get a chance to snap out of their funk against a slumping starting pitcher in Jordan Lyles (2-8, 5.69).

The right-hander has lost his last four decisions and is winless in seven starts since defeating San Diego on June 26. He was effective his last time out, though, giving up two runs and three hits in seven innings of a 3-2, 12-inning loss to Washington on Tuesday.

Lyles got hit hard by Milwaukee in his previous outing, allowing nine runs - seven earned - in five innings of a 13-4 defeat Aug. 1.

Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks has three hits - two of them homers - in five at-bats against Lyles. Weeks is batting .389 in his last 16 games overall, and is 4 for 8 with four doubles this weekend.