HOUSTON -- Rod Barajas was activated off the disabled list Thursday after concluding his rehab assignment with Class A Port St. Lucie. Barajas hit .238 with a homer and five RBIs in five games during his rehab stint.

With Barajas back, the Mets optioned outfielder Fernando Martinez to Buffalo.

Manuel monitoring Beltran's health

HOUSTON -- Mets manager Jerry Manuel said he made out two lineups before Wednesday's game against the Astros to ensure center fielder Carlos Beltran was OK to play. Beltran has been back with the Mets for a month now and Manuel said he wants to make sure that Beltran's knee is still doing well.

"I checked with him to make sure that he felt good enough," Manuel said. "I wanted to check with him and see where he was and he says he feels good."

Beltran has begun to play better for the Mets of late and is on a six-game hitting streak. He has hit .429 during the streak. Despite the streak, Manuel said he wants to be cautious as the outfielder continues to recover from knee surgery.

"I think he's started swinging the bat a lot better," Manuel said. "I think he's playing a lot better center field."

Manuel added that he trusts Beltran when he says he's OK to start, but added that players will always say they are good to go.

"They never tell you they don't want to play, so you have to read into some of the answers they give," Manuel said. "Even though they may be positive, you have to kind of take it out of their hands."

Tejada working through slump

HOUSTON -- Although second baseman Ruben Tejada is currently in an 0-for-27 skid, manager Jerry Manuel had him in the lineup Wednesday against the Astros. Manuel said he saw some good at-bats from Tejada on Tuesday.

"I think he has to be encouraged that he's swinging the bat well," Manuel said. "And as long he continues to play good defense and put together good at-bats, I think he'll be OK."

Manuel added that he sees Tejada developing into a solid hitter with potential to hit around .260 or .270 in the future. In the present, though, Manuel just hopes Tejada gets some hits to get on track.

"I'm sure his confidence is shaken, but I don't see it as to where he's rattled by it," Manuel said. "I think he has a good swing. He's going to be a good hitter."