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Blackley eager to see action after being activated

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HOUSTON -- Getting placed on the disabled list before he even had a chance to throw one pitch with the Astros, left-hander Travis Blackley was eager to get back on the mound in a Major League game after he was activated on Saturday.

Blackley rejoined the Astros after throwing two innings and about 30 pitches in his only Minor League rehab outing at Triple-A Oklahoma City on Thursday. He strained his left shoulder throwing in the bullpen shortly after being traded to Houston.

"That wasn't the plan, for sure," said Blackley, who was acquired from Oakland on April 4. "There was no way I was going to be able to throw the ball with anything on it. I felt super tired, and a little pain was going on in the back of the shoulder. It's probably the best thing for the arm at the time. I was OK with it. It's not how I wanted to start my go here, that's for sure."

The Australian southpaw compiled a 6-4 mark and 3.86 ERA in 24 outings (15 starts) last year with Oakland, which selected him off waivers from San Francisco in May. He'll be used in long relief with Houston.

"I wouldn't say I'm anxious, but I'm excited and ready to go," he said. "We're 20 days into the season and I haven't thrown in a game yet. I'm excited."

Blackley appeared in the fourth inning of Saturday's 19-6 loss to the Indians and allowed three runs on three hits.

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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