The Astros are very close to returning to full strength with Brad Peacock and Joe Smith in the clubhouse, and Carlos Correa and Aledmys Diaz set to rehab.
Peacock has pitched in one game for the AA Corpus Christi Hooks in his rehab. He started the game Wednesday pitching the first two innings. Peacock struck out the first two batters in the first inning, walked the next batter, and got the third out on a fly ball. He again struck out the first two in the second inning and closed it out on a ground ball.
That was the first live action Peacock has seen since he got rocked for six runs on June 27th. He said afterward that he felt “pretty good” and would see how he’ll feel the following day. If all goes well he could be back on the schedule to start against the Angels on Monday.
Peacock went on the 10-day Injured List with shoulder discomfort on June 28. In his last four starts, he went 1-3 with an ERA of 7.08. Hopefully, we’ll get back the Peacock that was 9-4 and carried a 3.20 ERA in the 13 games prior to those four.
Joe Smith had six one-inning outings between AA Corpus Christi and AAA Round Rock. He got hit hard a little his last appearance, giving up four runs on three hits and two homers. But in the other five games, he allowed just one hit while striking out eight.
Smith has been reactivated and added to the 25-man roster. It’s been a long haul for Smith overcoming an Achilles tendon surgery. But if we get back the old Joe Smith, it would be a welcome sight for a well-overused bullpen. Cy Sneed was optioned to make room for Smith.
Aledmys Diaz is expected to meet up with the Astros in Arlington today. He’ll do some workouts on the field with the team and will begin his rehab assignment early next week sometime.
Correa is still recovering from his infamous cracked rib injury that occurred during an in-home massage. He is expected to start his rehab assignment a sometime behind Diaz. He’s been placed on the 60-day IL to make space on the 40-man roster for Smith and won’t be eligible until July 26th.
It would be amazing to see Correa and Diaz back in the lineup, especially with the addition of Yordan Alvarez. That lineup has got to be one of the most potent in the Majors. I pity the opposing pitchers, well, not really. It will also be very interesting to see which players will be exiting, to make room on the roster.