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Norris Takes The Hill To Start Season Finale Series

(Sports Network) - Right-hander Bud Norris takes his last shot at winning 10 games this season when the Houston Astros host the Chicago Cubs to open a three-game weekend series to close 2010 at Minute Maid Park.

Norris won three straight decisions to get to 9-8 on the season between Sept. 9 and 20, then lost his initial bid at a 10th victory when the Astros were beaten, 6-4, at Pittsburgh on Sept. 25.

In the three September wins, Norris, who was 6-3 in 11 appearances as a rookie last season, allowed 12 hits and five runs across 20 innings against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Milwaukee and Washington.

He is 1-0 lifetime in two appearances against the Cubs, giving up seven hits and an earned run in nine innings.

For Chicago, rookie righty Casey Coleman makes the final start of his initial stint in the majors.

A 2008 draft choice out of Florida Gulf Coast University, Coleman dropped a 5-1 verdict to San Diego for his first decision on Aug. 18, but has since won three of four, including a 7-3 defeat of St. Louis on Sept. 25.

In that game, the 23-year-old native of Fort Myers, Florida allowed two earned runs on five hits in seven innings, striking out four.

It was his longest outing of 2010.

Coleman's lone start against Houston came Sept. 6 in Chicago and ended in a no-decision after he allowed eight hits and four runs in six innings of a game the Cubs won, 5-4.

On Thursday in San Diego, Brad Snyder drove in the only run of the game in the ninth inning, and Chicago dealt the Padres a damaging 1-0 loss in the finale of a four-game series at PETCO Park.

Carlos Marmol struck out two of the three batters he faced in the bottom of the ninth to earn his 37th save. Snyder's clutch hit made a winner out of Sean Marshall (7-5), who recorded the final two outs in the eighth.

In Cincinnati, Drew Stubbs hit a two-run home run and finished with four RBI as the Reds took a 9-1 win from the Houston Astros in the finale of a three- game set. Jeff Keppinger hit a solo home run for the Astros, who have dropped four of their last five.

Brett Myers (14-8) came into the game having gone at least six innings in all of his previous 32 starts on the season, but was pulled with two outs in the sixth to snap the streak. He gave up eight runs on 10 hits with four walks and seven strikeouts.

Houston has won 10 of its 15 matchups with the Cubs this season.

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