Astros: Bregman is scheduled to return on March 16

Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /

The Houston Astros have been without third baseman Alex Bregman all spring, as he has been nursing a leg injury. On Sunday, Michael Schwab reported that the All-Star will be in the lineup for the first time this spring on Tuesday against the New York Mets.

The ball club dominated the Washington Nationals on Sunday, while having Yordan Alvarez in the lineup for the first time this spring as well. Home runs from Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel gave the Astros an easy victory, while Lance McCullers Jr. dealt six punch outs through four innings.

Will Alex Bregman be ready for Opening Day?

While expected to hit his first game on Tuesday, Bregman has said before that he will be ready by Opening Day. After a regressed year in 2020, the right-hander looks to bounce back in 2021, while having an offseason full of workouts and getting in shape like many Astros this winter.

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It is evident that these guys are looking to work their way back to another World Series for the third time since 2017, but players have fallen to injury and have left for bigger contracts. Bregman will need to mirror his AL MVP second place place numbers for 2021, if the Astros are expecting to make it back once again.

As one of the toughest players in the game, Bregman will exceed expectations, but who takes his place if he is quite not ready? It could come down to one of the three utility players the Astros have on their 40-man roster. With Robel Garcia, Aledmys Diaz and Abraham Toro having the skill sets to play at the hot corner, Diaz would have the best chance to start on Opening Day, while opening a roster spot for either Garcia or Toro.

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The Astros are back on the field on Monday against the Miami Marlins at 12:05 p.m. in West Palm Beach. With Bregman and Alvarez expected to be in the lineup the next day, the Astros offensive powerhouse is coming to full strength.