"It's kind of hard to get your timing early in the year with an at-bat here and at-bat there, and it's always good to get three or four at-bats in one night to try to get some timing and track some pitches and see some balls," Downs said. "[Manager Brad Mills] was good about getting me in there last year."
Downs, who led the Majors with 15 pinch-hit RBIs last year and averaged a homer every 19.9 at-bats, was hitless in his first six at-bats entering Tuesday.
Mills wanted to give him a start earlier in the year, but third baseman Chris Johnson and second baseman Jose Altuve - the starters at the two positions which Downs is most likely to play on defense - were off to hot starts at the plate.
"It's hard to pull a guy out of there if he's hitting real well, and I don't blame him," Downs said.
Mills said Downs will likely get at least one start this weekend against either Dodgers left-handers Ted Lilly (Friday) and Clayton Kershaw (Saturday).