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Astros' Brandon Lyon Ready To Return To Bullpen

Ugly is the only way to describe Brandon Lyon in 2011. Lyon appeared in 15 games for the Houston Astros, pitching 13.1 innings, while giving up a staggering 17 runs on 27 hits, while walking five and striking out only six.

Very few major league players are that bad when healthy. Lyon certainly wasn't healthy, and he had to undergo surgery to place his biceps tendon back in its proper place.

Lyon, though, is ten months removed from the surgery and is ready to roll for the Astros as a member of their 2012 bullpen. Per the Houston Chronicle:

"Right now he's a regular member of the bullpen," general manager Jeff Luhnow said, in contrast to the notion that the Astros still might consider him a patient. "His velocity's up to 91, he's a veteran, he throws strikes. He's a key piece to our bullpen right now."

Lyon's contract with the Astros expires after this year. While he's likely never going to be a closer again, he should prove to be a capable member of Houston's bullpen -- and perhaps another team's bullpen come August this year, if he's pitching well enough to trade.

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Images by eflon used in background images under a Creative Commons license. Thank you.