Other than the injury to Framber Valdez, Jake Kaplan reported that the Houston Astros will be down three more pitchers for “several days.” Luis Garcia, Bryan Abreu and Ronel Blanco are no longer at the spring training facilities due to health and safety protocols.
This news comes after the somewhat complicated ring finger fracture to Framber Valdez, who does not have an expected timetable on a return just yet. It has been reported that the injury is serious, so the Astros are looking to rely on prospects or possibly evaluate an arm still in free agency.
With these three pitchers falling to injury, the Astros will have to have to test the waters with other arms.
Pitchers report to spring training earlier due to the needed time to ramp up, but a short cut from practice like this will pause their development, especially for two pitchers like Garcia and Abreu. These two right-handers are looking to hold roster spots in the near future, while being the needed depth in the middle of the season. To make things worse, Garcia was scheduled to make his 2021 spring training debut today against the St. Louis Cardinals.
The Astros could possibly explore free agency for a veteran arm this year, while being one of the most lackluster rotations for Houston in the past five seasons. Injuries have plagued the Astros’ staff, but there hasn’t been much more reported on these pitchers’ health; meaning there is no room to speculate what happened. These blows hurt an already young and banged up rotation, but as the season progresses and a healthy staff comes into place, the Astros rotation could be top ten in MLB. Outside of the pitching room, the team is also working back the health of Yordan Alvarez and Alex Bregman without risking another possible injury.