HOUSTON -- Nolan Arenado's right shoulder is doing just fine. Thanks to the American League, it has time to heal.
The Rockies' All-Star third baseman returned to the lineup in Tuesday's 5-1 win over the Astros at Minute Maid Park as Colorado's designated hitter. In the sixth inning, Arenado hit a go-ahead two-run home run off Justin Verlander to give the Rockies a 2-1 lead. It is Arenado's fourth straight season with 30 or more homers.
While in Houston, the Rockies will have a DH in their lineup Tuesday and Wednesday, allowing Arenado's bat to be used and his shoulder to get additional rest away from third base. Arenado is hopeful to return to third Wednesday, but there's little concern if the Rockies plan another defensive off-day by starting Arenado in the DH role again.
"I played catch today from maybe 60 feet, just to get it loose and kind of get it going a little bit," Arenado said. "Felt OK. Not bad. We've got a DH today, they thought it was the best thing to rest it again. We have the opportunity here, so hopefully [Wednesday], I'll play third. It's not for sure."
The Rockies were off Monday and will return to a National League ballpark Thursday at Atlanta, giving Arenado several defensive rest days, should he need them.
Arenado exited Friday's game against the Dodgers in the fifth inning with right shoulder soreness and was held out of the lineup Saturday and Sunday. Throwing has been the issue, not batting. Arenado made pinch-hitting appearances Saturday and Sunday, taking one at-bat in each game.
"Yeah, these couple games, it's always good to have that option and get Nolan in there," Rockies manager Bud Black said. "It's hard not writing his name in the lineup. It becomes pretty consistent to be able to do that, to not do it the last couple of days was a little bit different. But today, we were able to do it. We'll see about tomorrow, hopefully we can get him in the field."
• Right-hander Antonio Senzatela pitched a simulated game Tuesday at Minute Maid Park. Senzatela was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Aug. 5 with right shoulder inflammation and has missed nine games, including Tuesday.
"He threw the ball fine," Black said. "No pain, no discomfort. Threw very well, we thought. So that's a great sign, to be able to project him back on our roster at some point here. Very positive results from today with Antonio."
• The Rockies placed right-handed reliever Scott Oberg on the paternity list and recalled infielder Garrett Hampson from Triple-A Albuquerque. It is Hampson's second stint on the Major League roster after playing seven games earlier this season, including his MLB debut at Arizona on July 21.
Oberg's wife, Diana, gave birth to the couple's first child, a girl, Charlotte Rose, at 5:45 p.m. ET on Monday.