The Astros have placed Travis Buck on the disabled list and called up Fernando Martinez to fill out the roster. Fernando is playing rightfield and batting sixth tonight in his Astros debut. Martinez hit .319/.374/.532 in 51 games for AAA Oklahoma City after being picked up off waivers from the Mets during the offseason. Martinez hit eight homers and drove in 38 runs for the RedHawks in the first two months of the season.
Buck is suffering from a case of Achilles tendinitis and hasn’t played since Monday. Carlos Lee sustained a strained left hamstring in last night’s game, leaving the Astros a couple of players short and creating an opportunity for Martinez. Fernando will see plenty of playing time on a team that is looking to spark a sputtering offense.
Astros skipper Brad Mills was quoted as saying,
"We didn’t bring him up here to sit."
Fernando clubbed a two-run double high off the wall in his second at-bat as an Astro, sending the umpires to the replay booth. The call stood and Martinez will have to wait for his first homer with his new club. I don’t expect it to be a very long wait. Martinez helped the Astros battle back from an early 8-2 deficit tonight and turn what looked like a blowout into a barn-burner. The Astros took a 9-8 lead in the fourth and at the time of this post the game was tied at nine after five innings.
In other player news, it was announced that Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler has been awarded Free Agency. The Astros have expressed an interest in Soler all along and will reportedly pursue his services.
"We like the player, and it’s just a matter of how much competition there is going to be and where it’s going to end up, but we’re definitely looking into it."
Astros G.M. Jeff Luhnow
Soler is expected to sign quickly due to changes in international signing rules that will take effect on July 2.