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06/09/11 1:27 AM ET

Astros activate Lyon from DL, send down Valdez

HOUSTON -- Brandon Lyon, who's been on the disabled list since May 5 with tendinitis in his right biceps and a partial tear in his rotator cuff, was activated after Wednesday's 4-1 win over the Cardinals at Minute Maid Park. In a a corresponding roster move, right-hander Jose Valdez was optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

"I'm feeling a lot better," said Lyon, who pitched two innings in a Minor League rehab stint at Oklahoma City. "I got a couple of outings down there and recovered well. I felt good today after throwing [on Tuesday]. It's about time to get back out there."

Manager Brad Mills said that Lyon will return to the closer's role, but not right away. Mark Melancon has been closing games since Lyon blew a save on May 4 in Cincinnati.

"Mark's done a good job for us all year and is going to continue to do a good job," Mills said. "He's got the stuff, and is a good pitcher. We want to be able to do things the right way, and doing them the right way is being able to have veteran guys at the end of the game that have success in doing that in the past, like Brandon has. But to put him back in that role right now ... I think we need to ease him back in."

Lyon is 3-2 with a 7.15 ERA in 12 games this year, with four saves in eight chances. He went 20-for-22 in save chances last year after Matt Lindstrom lost the job.

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.