Astros News: Raul Valdes designated for assignment; Darin Downs called up from Triple-A Oklahoma City

Otto Greule Jr

The revolving door that is the Astros' left-handed relievers continues to turn.

Raul Valdes' time with the Astros was like a comet. A streak of bright light gone in the blink of an eye. That was Valdes expect for the whole bright, beautiful light part.

Valdes was called up from Triple-A Oklahoma City after Kevin Chapman stumbled out of the gate. He pitched 3.2 innings over eight appearances, posting 12.27 ERA , 5 H, 5 ER, 3 BB, 4 SO. Lefties were hitting .429 off him in 1.1 innings of work. All five runs he had given up came at the hands of right-handed bats, leading to a 19.29 ERA against righties.

Darin Downs joins recently signed Tony Sipp as the Astros' two left-handers in the bullpen. Downs, another waiver claim this offseason, pitched the last two season for the Detroit Tigers - 2-3, 4.33 ERA, 20 BB, 57 SO, 1.32 WHIP in  47 major league appearances. In Triple-A Oklahoma City,  he has a record of 1-2 with a 5.54 ERA, 4BB, 15 SO. Downs pitched four scoreless innings with four strikeouts against Triple-A Round Rock before being called up.

Downs pitched a scoreless ninth inning today, allowing one hit.

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