Astros designate Wilson for assignment to make room for Hirsh

Updated: August 12, 2006, 7:31 PM ET
Associated Press

HOUSTON -- Astros outfielder Preston Wilson was designated for assignment on Saturday, a roster move Houston made so it could promote pitcher Jason Hirsh from Triple-A Round Rock.

"I guess it's just the nature of the business," Wilson said. "I'm never shocked, but I'm disappointed."

Hirsh was to make his major league debut Saturday night against San Diego. His call-up was expected, but the corresponding move surprised Wilson, who was batting .269 and was second on the team with 55 RBIss.

Houston signed Wilson on Jan. 3 to add power to the lineup, but he hit only nine home runs in 102 games. He made only two starts after July 29 and had been replaced in the regular lineup by Luke Scott, who's batting .413 since being recalled from Triple-A Round Rock on July 14.

Wilson's contract paid him $4 million this season, but gave the Astros the option to re-sign him for the next three seasons and included a $500,000 buyout.

In nine seasons, the 32-year-old Wilson hit .265 with 180 home runs and 646 RBIss. Wilson wasn't ready to consider his future options on Saturday.

"I would really like the opportunity to play," he said. "I don't feel, by any means, like I'm down to my last year. I feel like I've got five or six good years left in me."

The 24-year-old Hirsh was 13-2 with a 2.10 ERA in 23 starts for Triple-A Round Rock this season. He's won his last 12 starts since May 8 and leads the Pacific Coast League with 118 strikeouts.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press

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