Astros designate Philip Humber for assignment


Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle reports that the Astros have designated Philip Humber for assignment. He’ll either be released or outrighted to Triple-A Oklahoma City if he clears waivers.

Humber opened the 2013 regular season in the Astros’ rotation but got demoted to the bullpen after seven disastrous starts. He wound up posting an 0-8 record, 9.59 ERA and 2.02 WHIP in 35 2/3 innings (seven starts, two relief appearances) with Houston.

The Astros signed right-handed reliever Edgar Gonzalez to fill the vacant roster spot. Gonzalez was designated for assignment last Thursday by the Blue Jays and elected to become a free agent.

Humber threw a perfect game for the White Sox on April 21, 2012, but he has been awful since.

Jeff Samardzija to undergo MRI on right shoulder

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Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.

This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.

Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.