Astros put Lidge on DL with pulled oblique muscle

Updated: June 20, 2007, 3:02 AM ET
Associated Press

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- The Houston Astros placed closer Brad Lidge on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday night because of a pulled oblique muscle in his left side.

"It's definitely frustrating," said Lidge, who only recently had been put back into the closer role after losing it to Dan Wheeler. "I finally found my way back to where things were going real good, and I'm just hoping that we can get this thing done as soon as possible. I was trying to get through it and trying to throw with it, but it was getting worse every day and starting to bark real bad. So it made no sense for us to keep doing this. I'm disappointed."

The move was retroactive to June 16 and made after the Astros beat the Angels 9-5.

Lidge set an NL single-season record for strikeouts by a reliever in 2004 with 157 and pitched in his first All-Star Game the following year. But last year he struggled mightily, with an ERA of 5.28.

This season he is 2-1 with a 2.34 ERA, but has blown all three save opportunities. In 27 games since April 22, the right-hander has allowed three earned runs over 29 1/3 innings.

"There's no question that if he kept trying to get through this, it would be lingering," manager Phil Garner said. "I've never seen an oblique get better with a guy trying to play on it and nurse it. It's been bothering him for several days, so he needs to shut down, and it'll be a while here where he won't do any throwing activity."

The Astros purchased the contract of left-hander Stephen Randolph from Triple-A Round Rock to fill Lidge's spot on the 25-man roster.


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press