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Astros seek bounce-back effort against White Sox

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Houston Astros will take on the Chicago White Sox in the second leg of a three-game series at U.S.

Cellular Field.

Houston's Dallas Keuchel takes the mound in an attempt to prove he should have been named to the All-Star team.

"I don't play this game for awards or All-Star nominations, so it was nice to see I was nominated to be an All-Star," Keuchel said. "But it was a little disappointing at the same time based on the fact that I'm a professional and want to do my job well. To not make it, it is just a little disappointing."

The White Sox, who have some struggling pitchers on the staff, will counter with Hector Noesi Saturday.

Keuchel comes into the contest with a 9-5 record and a 3.20 earned run average with 87 strikeouts this season. The big left-handed pitcher started the season strong, but has gone 1-2 with a no-decision in his most recent four starts.

But his latest outing was a dominant one for the Astros on July 9. Keuchel lasted 6 2/3 innings on the mound and surrendered four runs on eight hits. His offense provided plenty of support in the 8-4 Houston victory.

The 26-year-old has started one game against the White Sox in his career, in which he went 6 1/3 innings and gave up two runs. He struck out four and picked up the win. On the road this season, Keuchel is 7-2 with a 3.13 ERA.

Noesi has struggled this season and brings a 3-7 record into the contest Saturday. His 5.26 ERA reflects a few tough outings in his last five starts.

Noesi is 1-2 in that span, with two no-decisions. On July 6 the right-hander picked up a big victory against Seattle, going 6 2/3 innings and allowing just five hits with no earned runs. The Sox defeated the Mariners, 1-0. But his latest trip to the mound was another dud, as Noesi lasted 4 2/3 innings after surrendering six runs on seven hits. His White Sox lost to Cleveland, 7-4.

In four career games against Houston, Noesi is 0-1 with a 7.27 ERA and a 1.96 WHIP.

The White Sox barely edged out the Astros Friday night in the series opener, 3-2. Tyler Flowers drove home what proved to be the winning run on a deep double in the seventh inning, which scored Alejandro De Aza.

Jose Quintana got the start for Chicago on Friday, but didn't make it past the fifth inning despite allowing just two runs and three hits with eight strikeouts. Daniel Webb picked up the win for the White Sox.

Scott Feldman was credited with the loss for Houston. He lasted seven innings in which he gave up seven hits and three earned runs.

Dayan Viciedo clubbed a two-run homer for Chicago to knot the score at 2-2 in the sixth inning.

"There were some good things that happened that you like to see coming out of the break." White Sox manager Robin Ventura said.

Jose Altuve, who entered Friday night leading the American League with 130 hits, added one more to his season resume.

Chicago has won two of its last three games, while Houston has dropped three of its last four games. The Astros took two of three games in a series back in May.

The Astros are way out of playoff contention in the AL West Division, while Chicago sits second to last in the AL Central race.

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