Astros call up Worth with Gregerson away

Infielder, 30, mashing lefties at Triple-A; reliever on family emergency list

Astros call up Worth with Gregerson away

ST. LOUIS -- Danny Worth found himself in a Major League lineup on Tuesday for the first time since 2014 after the Astros purchased his contract from Triple-A Fresno. He took the roster spot of relief pitcher Luke Gregerson, who was placed on the family medical emergency list.

Worth, 30, was hitting .340 with 12 doubles, eight homers, 36 RBIs, 37 walks and a .449 on-base percentage at Fresno, including a .396 average against left-handers. This marks his first appearance on a big league roster since he played in 20 games for the Tigers in 2014.

"I'm extremely happy," Worth said. "I was just going about my business down there and trying to hit and be consistent, and I'm glad to be here."

Worth on being called up

Astros manager A.J. Hinch said Worth would play mostly third base and maybe some first base, especially against left-handers. He could fill in at shortstop or second base if Carlos Correa and Jose Altuve get a day off, but the better he plays, the more he'll play.

"He's earned the opportunity," Hinch said. "We've been working for a couple a weeks trying to figure out how a roster could be put together with him on it. He's really nudged his way into the opportunity. He's outperformed the league in Triple-A, he's really found some consistency, especially against left-handed pitching.

"We're thrilled to add him. He's a guy who's a little bit of a late bloomer. He hasn't had a ton of opportunity in the big leagues, but his performance was so great in Triple-A, it was time to give him a look here."

Worth, selected in the second round by the Tigers in 2007, had spent his entire professional career with Detroit before hitting. 314 with six homers and 47 RBIs last year at Triple-A Reno in the D-backs system. Despite his success, he didn't get a shot with Arizona.

"Just trying to find the fun in playing anywhere I'm at, whether it's Triple-A or the big leagues or anywhere," Worth said. "Just trying to have fun helping the team win and have fun with the guys on a daily basis."

Gregerson, who's appeared in 29 games this season, returned for home for a family emergency. He can be out a minimum of three days and a maximum of seven days.

"As a team, we consider ourselves a really tight family," Hinch said. "When you see someone in your family go through what he and his family are going through, we certainly band together and support and hate to lose him for whatever time that we lose him, but completely understand he's got a family emergency to tend to. We'll welcome him back with all the support he needs."

Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.