Houston's Porter defends Bedard

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By KRISTIE RIEKEN, Associated Press

HOUSTON (AP) — Houston manager Bo Porter is defending Erik Bedard's decision to remove himself from Saturday night's game against Seattle with a no-hitter in the seventh inning because of a high pitch count and says he wouldn't have let the left-hander stay in much longer.

Bedard chose to leave the game with one out in the seventh because he had 109 pitches, saying "I've had three shoulder surgeries. I'm not going over 110 (pitches). I'd rather pitch a couple more years than face another batter."

On Sunday Porter said he would have pulled Bedard at 120 pitches. Porter says when it comes to health issues, he always leans toward protecting the player above all else.

Bedard was replaced by Jose Cisnero and he gave up a two-run double to Michael Saunders.

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