The Houston Astros reward Triple-A MVP Matt Duffy with a promotion

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The Houston Astros had their best comeback win of the year on Sunday against the Angels where Jed Lowrie once again was the hero with a big time home run in the ninth that gave the Astros the win. This comeback was probably the best news of the day for the Astros, but it wasn’t the only news. Before the game, Carlos Gomez was scratched from the lineup because he was really sore. It was reported earlier by Julia Morales that Gomez was “scratched with intercostal discomfort. Felt it in his last round of BP. Marisnick in CF.”

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While it is still unknown about how serious this injury is, if it is an intercostal strain, Gomez could be out for a while. Doing some research for how long a player could be out, I found something at Physioadvisor.com about it. According to the site, “with appropriate physiotherapy management, most patients with an intercostal strain can make a full recovery (i.e. return to sport or normal activities) in a period of 4-6 weeks. In more severe cases, recovery may take longer.”

If this is the case for Gomez, that could put him out for the rest of the season and the playoffs. Let’s not panic yet, he is going back to Houston to get examined, but he is not in the lineup tomorrow.

Hopefully, it’s not that major of an injury, and he will be back in a few days. The Astros decided to make their second announcement of the game, could it be a result of the first one? The Astros have been struggling recently, so they decided to call up the PCL MVP Matt Duffy from Triple-A Fresno. I wrote about Duffy earlier here: Astros Minors Report: Fresno’s Matt Duffy wins the PCL MVP. At the time of that writing, I said that the Astros were going to have to protect Duffy this offseason, so why not protect him now so that they can use him this season. Maybe Jeff Luhnow read that article and decided my logic was excellent.

I know, I can dream on. I think the Astros finally realized that they needed more offensive firepower if they want to be successful in 2015. With the potential loss of Gomez for an extended time, they could use some more power in the lineup if Jake Marisnick was going to be in the lineup most days. This could be where Duffy comes in; I think he will be given a shot to take over at first base.

Duffy has played primarily at third base with the Fresno Grizzlies (75 games), but he has also played first base in 33 games this year. The Astros currently have Jed Lowrie manning third base with Luis Valbuena and Marwin Gonzalez splitting time at first base. Duffy has had 11 errors at third base this year compared to only two at first base. I’m not sure if Duffy is here to start every day, but he could offer support at both first and third base.

What can Duffy offer the Astros? Let’s look at his stats from his MVP season with the Grizzlies.

Slash line: .294/ .366/ .471/ .834

Home Runs: 20

RBI’s: 104

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How will these numbers translate to the major leagues? Not sure, but if he can come in and get close to the above slash line with the Astros, which will give them more giddyup in their lineup. With the 104 RBI’s, he could be the clutch guy the Astros’ offense appears to be missing. At this point, anyone could help this lineup that can be great one night and get shutout the next night.

Duffy is not on the 40-man roster, so someone will have to be removed from it for Duffy to get activated. The only person on the major league roster who could be DFA is Chris Carter, who is rarely getting any playing time recently. The Astros have pretty much waited all season for Carter to heat up, but despite having 17 homers, he is having a miserable season. Scott Feldman is out for the season with a shoulder strain, so the Astros could put him on the 60-day DL, but would still have to make a roster decision later.

The Astros need to decide whether they will keep Carter in the offseason. If he is not in the future of the Astros as Larry wrote here: Does Chris Carter Have A Future With the Astros? The Astros need to part ties with him. I know it’s hard getting a divorce from someone, but if it is best for the team for this season, just do it. Yes, Carter could get picked up for another team, and he could have a heck of a career. But his time in Houston should be over.

Next: Houston Astros: What if the Astros don’t make the playoffs in 2015?

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