Houston manager Bo Porter made the announced Thursday, when the Astros reassigned shortstop Carlos Correa and pitcher Mark Appel to their minor league camp. Correa was the top pick in the 2012 amateur draft and Appel was the No. 1 selection last year.
The Astros also reassigned first baseman Jon Singleton, outfielder Delino DeShields and pitcher Mike Foltynewicz. George Springer was optioned to Oklahoma City where he will make the transition from center field to right field.
All except Singleton were first-round draft choices.
"There's not too many organizations that can send out that caliber of talent, all in one fell swoop," general manager Jeff Luhnow said as the Astros lost to a Philadelphia Phillies split squad 6-3. "While none of them are ready to be on the 25-man major league roster for opening day, all of them, I believe, will be there in the near future."
Lucas Harrell, among four candidates for two open spots in Houston's rotation, allowed one run and six hits in 4 1/3 innings. He walked two and struck out none.
"I would prefer not to get any strikeouts," he said. "When I strike out a lot of guys, I throw a lot of pitches and I tend to come out of the game a little earlier. When I can get groundballs and early contact, that usually means I'm going seven or eight innings."
"This time and the next time out, I need to throw well to give myself a chance to make the team," Harrell said. "I don't necessarily look at it as competing with the the other guys. I compete with myself. I have high expectations every year."
Astros: Harrell got nine of 13 outs on ground balls.
"I felt like I got some weak contact today and that's mainly what I'm looking for," he said.
Phillies: Outfielder Darin Ruf strained his left oblique muscle during batting practice and was scratched from the starting lineup. Ruf was scheduled to bat third for the Phillies. He was replaced in left field by Steve Susdorf, and Ruf returned to Clearwater to be examined. He is hitting .217 with two home runs in 18 spring training games.
Astros: Appel, slowed by appendectomy, is to make his first game appearance of spring training Friday in a minor league exhibition.
Cosart and Singelton came to the Astros from the Phillies in the 2011 trade for Hunter Pence. Porter called the 23-year-old Cosart "a front-end-of-the-rotation guy when he's locked in."