HOUSTON (AP) -The Houston Astros called up outfielder Hunter Pence from Triple-A Round Rock and benched Chris Burke on Friday night after a loss to Milwaukee.
The 24-year-old Pence was batting .341 with three homers and 19 RBIs through 22 games with Round Rock. Pence went 3-for-5 with a double and three runs scored on Friday night.
General manager Tim Purpura said Pence would replace Burke in center field, starting Saturday.
The Astros have lost seven in a row and scored four runs or less in all seven losses. They came into Friday's game batting .241, fifth-worst in the NL.
``We've got to find a way to get the offense going,'' Purpura said. ``We're getting hits, but we're not driving in runs. That's certainly a lot to ask of a young player, but all reports from Round Rock are that he's doing great.''
Burke, who moved to center field after the Astros traded Willy Taveras in the offseason, was hitting .225 before going 0-for-2 with a walk in a 4-1 loss Friday night.
``I'm just more disappointed with myself,'' Burke said. ``I had a chance to play and I didn't do well, and we're not winning. At the end of the day, I stunk.''
The Astros also designated left-handed reliever Stephen Randolph for assignment. Randolph gave up a solo home run to Johnny Estrada in Friday's loss.
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