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Astros designate Joe Thatcher for assignment; recall Vincent Velasquez

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Astros give lefty specialist Joe Thatcher his walking papers ahead of Vince Velasquez's start on Tuesday.

Peter Llewellyn-USA TODAY Sports

The Astros announced they have designated left-handed pitcher Joe Thatcher for assignment, ahead of  Vince Velasquez's start on Tuesday.

The move was coming after manager A.J. Hinch announced Velasquez would rejoining the Astros rotation following the All-Star break. Thatcher was a non-roster invitee to the Spring Training this season after spending 2014 with the Angels.

Thatcher was one of two left-handed pitchers to make the Astros Opening Day roster -- alongside Tony Sipp.

Thatcher appeared in 36 games for the Astros with a 3.79 ERA in 19 innings pitched. He started strong but has stubbled lately as pointed out by AstrosCounty: