(Sports Network) – Right-hander Homer Bailey comes off the disabled list for his first start of 2011 today when the Cincinnati Reds host the Houston Astros in the third and final game of a series between National League Central rivals at Great American Ball Park.
Bailey, who won eight times in 20 starts for the Reds last season, went on the 15-day disabled list late in spring training with impingement in his right shoulder.
He made rehab starts at Triple-A Louisville on April 17, 24 and 30 and was scheduled to make his final rehab start today, but will start for the Reds off the rescheduled rainout from Monday.
A native Texan, Bailey reached the majors in 2007 after his first-round selection (seventh overall) three years earlier. He was 4-2 in nine starts in his first stint and 0-6 in eight starts a year later before rebounding for an 8-5 mark in 2009 and a 4-3 slate in 2010.
He got a no-decision against the Astros in his lone career matchup, allowing three hits and five runs in 5 2/3 innings with five strikeouts.
Houston goes with durable righty Brett Myers, who’s lasted six innings or more in all but one of 39 starts with the Astros. Myers was 14-8 with a 3.14 earned run average in his first season with Houston – striking out 180 batters in a career-high 223 2/3 innings.
He faced Cincinnati in his second start of 2011 and pitched 6 2/3 innings of six-hit ball en route to a no-decision in a game the Astros ultimately win, 3-2.
In 12 lifetime meetings with the Reds, including 10 starts, he is 3-3 with a hold and a 4.02 ERA across 65 innings.
The Reds pulled even in the series in dramatic fashion on Wednesday, as Jay Bruce’s run-scoring double in the ninth capped a three-run inning, giving them a 3-2 win.
Houston closer Brandon Lyon (3-2) walked Drew Stubbs on four pitches leading off, then a wild pitch moved him to second and Chris Heisey singled to put runners on the corners for Joey Votto, whose single plated a run and left men on first and second.
Brandon Phillips tied the game with a base hit to right before Bruce grounded a double just inside the first base bag, scoring Votto with the winning run.
Cincinnati, which entered Wednesday’s game at 14-15, was 14-15 after 29 games last season before winning nine of the next 10 on the way to its first division title since 1995.
Aneury Rodriguez, making his first career big-league start, allowed only one hit – a one-out triple to Valaika in the third – and one walk, while striking out three.
The right-hander previously made nine relief appearances this season with a 6.75 earned run average.
Cincinnati took two of three from the Astros earlier in the season.