The Houston Astros were hit with another injury speed bump, as Andre Scrubb left Friday’s game with arm soreness. The right-hander looked flushed walking into to the dugout with the trainer, after an inning of work in a loss to the Washington Nationals.
Looking at the big picture, we do not know the serious of the injury just yet, but if he misses an extended period of the time, the Astros would have two spots open in their bullpen with Pedro Baez most likely not being ready for Opening Day. Catcher Martin Maldonado noticed the lack in velocity of Scrubb’s pitches, which prompted him to call for the trainers.
Who fills the void of Baez and Scrubb for the Astros?
While having the most innings of any Astros’ reliever in 2020, the right-hander had a low ERA, but his walk rate almost mirrored his strikeout rate. Lucky outings were dominated by a lack off control of certain pitches.
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Steve Cishek is a bullpen arm looking to make the roster, but his contract would put the Astros in a tough situation while dealing with the luxury tax threshold. As a veteran, the former closer would be effective for Houston, although putting the organization in a spot to be penalized by the league. While this payroll adjustment is dealt with at the end of the season, they could add the non-roster invite if needed.
If the team needs to look to talent within the system, Tyler Ivey or Peter Solomon could be two players to make their MLB debuts this season. While Bryan Abreu, Luis Garcia, Brandon Bielak and Nivaldo Rodriguez will most likely get the job, if Baez and Scrubb aren’t ready. We don’t know the seriousness of Scrubb’s injury, so at the moment, he would still be in the bullpen, if healthy, on Opening Day.
More roster cuts came on Friday with Shawn Dubin, Jojanse Torres, Colton Shaver and Jake Meyers were reassigned to the minor leagues. While not having the biggest standouts this spring, these moves aren’t surprising and leaves the team with about 51 players waiting for an assignment. The Astros are back on the field on Saturday in Jupiter against the St. Louis Cardinals at 12:05 p.m. with the game being televised in the Houston area.