HOUSTON -- The Houston Astros and Sharon Robinson, the daughter of legend Jackie Robinson, honored Sugar Land seventh-grader Aeliya Alif in a ceremony before Wednesday's game.

Alif finished second place in a national essay writing contest for Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life, an education program. Students in grades 4-8 wrote about how they embody the values that Jackie Robinson showed in his life.

Alif, 13, wrote about an experience that happened when she was 10 years old. Some strangers called her a terrorist because she wore a scarf on her head, but Alif told her father that she didn't want to retaliate against the men.

"What's important about it is that Aeliya took the initiative," Robinson said. "She directed how they were going to handle the outcome of this. She did not take it personal. She realized that it was something she's going to have to face in her life and she could be stronger."

For her essay, Alif will receive a laptop computer. She said she spent three days writing, editing and making her words meaningful.

"I wrote down my feelings on paper and told the world," Alif said.

Lyles to stay in Astros rotation, start on Sunday

HOUSTON -- Jordan Lyles was finally able to unpack his bags, now that he's sticking around for a little while.

Lyles, called up to start Tuesday's game in Philadelphia, will remain in the rotation and is scheduled to make his third start of the season for the Astros on Sunday against the Rangers. Lyles has spent the majority of this season at Triple-A Oklahoma City, having also made a spot start for the Astros on April 29.

Both of Lyles' starts have come on the road, and he's allowed 10 hits, four walks and struck out nine in 12 innings. He credits Oklahoma City pitching Burt Hooton with helping him get off to a quick start this season (he was 5-0 for the RedHawks).

"I really think I've made huge strides forward a couple of starts in working with Burt Hooton," Lyles said. "We worked on delivery things here and there to get more tilt and more angle on the ball and use my frame as much as I can to get the most out of my body. My velocity's been up and it's worked well."

Lyles came up for one start at the end of April to fill in for the injured Kyle Weiland.