Downs designated for assignment
Infielder Matt Downs, who hit .202 with eight homers and 16 RBIs in 91 games for the Astros last year, has been designated for assignment, essentially ending his time in a Houston uniform. Downs, claimed off waivers from the Giants on August on 2010, had a terrific 2011 season, hitting .276 with 10 homers and 41 RBIs in just 199 at-bats while playing all over the infield and even the outfield.
This is the time of year when teams clear space on their 40-man roster in advance of free agency and having to protect players prior to the Rule 5 Draft. Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow couldn’t be reached for comment.