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Astros move Bedard back into bullpen

Astros move Bedard back into bullpen

HOUSTON -- For the second time in less than a week, the Astros made a change in their starting rotation when manager Bo Porter announced Sunday left-hander Erik Bedard would be working out of the bullpen for an indefinite period.

Bedard is 0-2 with an 8.20 ERA in six games for the Astros this year, and has a 9.98 ERA in five starts. He threw 3 1/3 innings of scoreless relief in an Opening Night win over the Rangers before making five starts, four of which the Astros lost.

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"I talked to Erik about it, and he took it well," Porter said. "He understood the decision, and like I said to him, he's not a guy that I'll get up and sit back down. When he gets up, I'm going to get him up and get him in the game. I understand where he's at in his career, but I do believe that he can really help us in a multitude of roles.

"His strikeouts are up and he's a guy you can bring in if you find a pocket with some lefties that it may be the back end of a game situation, or it may be a long situation where we have a lead going into the sixth inning, kind of like we did Opening Day, and can set up the closer."

The Astros will take advantage of Monday's off-day to keep Jordan Lyles (Tuesday), Bud Norris (Wednesday) and Lucas Harrell (Thursday) on four days of rest, and Porter said he'll announce a starter for Friday's game against the Rangers later in the week.

Left-hander Dallas Keuchel or right-handers Paul Clemens or Jose Cisnero -- all of whom are in long relief roles in the bullpen -- could make the start, but Porter didn't rule out making a move. Top pitching prospect Jarred Cosart is scheduled to start Monday for Triple-A Oklahoma City, but the Astros don't seem in a rush to promote him. Left-hander Brett Oberholtzer is scheduled to throw Friday for the RedHawks.

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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