Dawson was optioned to the alternate training site Tuesday, Justice delos Santos of MLB.com reports. The 25-year-old had his contract selected by Houston last week but will return to the alternate training site with Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez, Martin Maldonado and Robel Garcia being activated from the COVID-19 injured list after clearing the virus protocols. Dawson appeared in three games, going 1-for-5 with a walk and two runs.
The Astros selected Dawson's contract from their alternate site ahead of Wednesday's game against the Tigers, Brian McTaggart of MLB.com reports. He'll serve as Houston's designated hitter and hit eighth in his MLB debut, per Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle. Dawson is one of five farmhands receiving a call-up to the majors after Houston placed five players -- all hitters -- on the COVID-19 injured list. Until at least a couple of those players clear MLB's health and safety protocols, the lefty-hitting Dawson could be a strong-side platoon player for Houston. During his last minor-league season in 2019, Dawson slashed .207/.313/.385 with 17 home runs and 14 stolen bases across 498 plate appearances between Triple-A Round Rock and Double-A Corpus Christi.
Dawson landed on the Astros' 60-man player pool. Dawson is one of several non-40-man roster players the Astros plan to carry for the shortened 2020 season. The 24-year-old outfielder is known as a power hitter and saw his average drop off against sustained exposure to advanced pitching in the upper minors in 2019.
Dawson was invited to the Astros' major-league camp Tuesday, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports. Dawson appeared in 119 games between High-A Buies Creek and Double-A Corpus Christi in 2018, hitting a combined .258/.333/.428 with 16 homers and 35 stolen bases. Seeing as the 23-year-old has yet to appear above Double-A, his presence at big-league camp is primarily for experience. Dawson figures to return to the minors to begin the 2019 campaign.
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