CHICAGO -- Astros manager Brad Mills said left-hander Wesley Wright pitched well enough Tuesday to warrant another chance in the starting rotation, but his future depends on how right-hander Brian Moehler continues to progress from a groin strain.
Wright, making his first Major League start following 126 appearances in relief, pitched 4 2/3 innings in a 14-7 loss to the Cubs and allowed six hits and six runs, only one of which was earned because of an error by second baseman Jeff Keppinger.
"I think with the way he threw yesterday, he deserves another start, if a spot opens up for him to make that start," Mills said.
Moehler, on the DL since July 8 with a left groin strain, is scheduled to throw a simulated game Friday and will likely be plugged into the rotation if all goes well."
"The way Wes threw the ball last night, a corner has been turned with him putting it together in [Triple-A] Round Rock like he did his last three outings," Mills said. "Do we want Wes in the bullpen to have those three lefties in the 'pen, or have Moehler solidify the bullpen a little bit? We'll have to look at who we're facing and see how Moehler is. We have to wait and see how he is first."
Astros add pair of veterans off waivers
CHICAGO -- Astros general manager Ed Wade continued to tweak the roster Wednesday, adding veteran right-hander pitcher Nelson Figueroa off waivers from the Phillies and middle infielder Anderson Hernandez off waivers from the Cleveland Indians.
Both players, who are out of options, will be added to the 25-man roster in time for Friday's game in Houston against the Cincinnati Reds. The Astros designated right-hander Gary Majewski for assignment and optioned shortstop Oswaldo Navarro to Triple-A Round Rock to clear room on the 25-man roster and designated Minor League left-hander Polin Trinidad to make room on the 40-man roster.
Hernandez, 27, is a career .245 hitter with four homers and 59 RBIs in 208 career games with the Mets (2005-07, '09), Nationals (2008-09) and Indians (2010). He'll provide depth in the middle of the infield while Geoff Blum recovers from elbow surgery.
"He's a good defensive infielder, and our guys have liked him," Wade said. "At one time, he was a pretty significant prospect in the Mets organization. We like his hands and his defensive ability, and he can swing the bat a little bit."
Figueroa, 36, is 15-29 with a 4.47 ERA in 119 career games with the D-backs (2000), Phillies (2001, 2010), Brewers (2002), Pirates (2003-04) and Mets (2008-09). He has been used primarily in relief, but can start if needed.
Wade said he will provide insurance for an Astros bullpen that has been hit hard by injuries to arms such as Alberto Arias, Sammy Gervacio, Brian Moehler and Jeff Fulchino.
"He gives us more depth and experience with the health issues we have right now," Wade said.
Meanwhile, right-hander Casey Daigle has cleared waivers, and he accepted his assignment to Triple-A Round Rock.
Moehler, Fulchino throw in bullpen
CHICAGO -- Injured Astros right-handers Brian Moehler and Jeff Fulchino both threw in the bullpen prior to Wednesday's game against the Cubs with varying results.
Moehler, on the disabled list since July 8 with a left groin strain, threw about 30 pitches pain-free and will pitch in a simulated game Friday at Minute Maid Park. Fulchino, on the shelf since June 29 with right elbow tendinitis, experienced some discomfort.
"Fulchino didn't feel as well as he did a couple of days ago, but at the same time he did his pitcher's program yesterday and had a day game [Wednesday]," Astros manager Brad Mills said. "He didn't get a chance for the arm [to get loose], so we'll wait and see on him a little bit."
Mills said Fulchino is still scheduled to throw in the same simulated game as Moehler.
"We might not be as enthused about it, but that's our goal if we can send him out there and something happens and we have to cut it short or whatever, then we'll do that," he said. "Right now the goal is to have that simulated game on Friday."
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.