Backe to Make Second Appearance with Express
ROUND ROCK - Nearly one month after making his first rehab outing of the season with the Triple-A Express, Brandon Backe is scheduled to return to the mound Saturday for what could be his last test before rejoining the Houston Astros.
The right-hander from Galveston has made five rehab starts, including four with the Double-A Corpus Christi Hooks. He last tossed eight scoreless innings in the Hooks' 1-0 loss to San Antonio on Monday, May 18. Through 30 rehab innings at the Double- and Triple-A level, Backe has recorded 18 strikeouts against nine walks with five earned runs (1.50 ERA).
In his last appearance with the Express on April 27, Backe used 24 pitches to get through a one-run first inning before settling in over the next three frames. He located 38 of his 63 pitches for strikes and allowed one run on two hits, two walks and a strikeout over four innings.
Backe - sidelined during Spring Training with a strained intercostal muscle (chest) - last appeared for Houston against the Atlanta braves on Sept. 27, 2008, allowing eight runs on eight hits, a walk and a strikeout over 1 1/3 innings. The 31-year-old was 9-14 with a 6.05 ERA and 127 strikeouts in 166 2/3 innings with Houston in 2008.
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