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Astros set rotation for final series with Diamondbacks

The beard goes on Friday.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

It doesn't get any bigger than this, the Astros need all three games against Diamondbacks. The Astros are 2.5 games behind the Rangers in the American League West and a half game ahead of the Angels for the second spot in the American League Wild Card. Not to be forgot the  Twins are 1.5 games behind the Astros for the Wild Card.

One key decision has been made, the rotation has been set for the Astros' final regular season series. Dallas Keuchel will start friday against Rubby De La Rosa and Collin McHugh faces Jeremy Hellickson. Houston hasn't set a starter for Sunday against Robbie Ray.

Friday: LHP Dallas Keuchel (19-8, 2.47 ERA, 1.01 WHIP) vs. RHP Rubby De La Rosa (14-8, 4.56 ERA, 1.32 WHIP) 
Saturday: RHP Collin McHugh (18-7, 3.98 ERA, 1.29 WHIP) vs. RHP Jeremy Hellickson (9-11, 4.60 ERA, 1.33 WHIP) 
Sunday: TBA vs. LHP Robbie Ray (5-12, 3.50 ERA, 1.31 WHIP)

Keuchel and McHugh flipped spots in the rotation, possibly an opening round/Wild Card game start for Keuchel. Keuchel would pitch on two days rest and three days in Wild Card Game on game on Tuesday.

In an Astros win on August 1, Keuchel allowed two runs over six innings against the Diamondbacks with eight strikeouts and three walks. Collin McHugh pitched seven innings against the Diamondbacks on Aug. 2, skinning out six and walking one -- Astros won 4-1.