HOUSTON -- Because the Astros have played so many tight games in September, manager Brad Mills has admittedly had a tough time finding a way to get relief pitchers Felipe Paulino and Wesley Wright some innings.
Paulino, who missed 2 1/2 months with right shoulder tendinitis, hadn't pitched since being activated from the 15-day disabled list prior to Sunday's game. Wright was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock on Sept. 1 and had yet to pitch prior to Wednesday.
"I've thought about [Paulino] and Wesley Wright an awful lot," Mills said. "I'm very cognizant of the fact we have to get those guys in. But with the 2-1, 3-2, 4-2 games, it's hard sometimes to be able to pick your spots and get those guys in."
Mills has been relying on Tim Byrdak, Fernando Abad and Gustavo Chacin against left-handers, Jeff Fulchino and Mark Melancon in middle relief and Wilton Lopez, Matt Lindstrom and Brandon Lyon in the late innings.
But Mills said Paulino, who made 14 starts before getting injured, will need to get back on the mound soon.
"We're going to have to bite the bullet and say, 'Hey, we need to get you in for this inning at some point,'" he said. "When does that point come? I don't know, but it's coming up quickly. We're going to need to get him an inning, and Wesley as well."