The Houston Astros have been in one of the worst funks in baseball, other than whatever the New York Yankees are doing. Although battling major injuries and COVID-19 issues, the team has lost seven of their last eight games, while four prospects (Chas McCormick, Ronnie Dawson, Alex De Goti and Peter Solomon) have made their major league debuts this season.
With many lineup and roster adjustments in 15 games thus far, the Astros were blessed with the news of Yordan Alvarez, Robel Garcia, Martin Maldonado and Alex Bregman traveling to Colorado on Monday. Although these four including Jose Altuve were cleared for individual workouts on Sunday after testing negative, the All-Star second baseman will not be in Denver.
The 40-man roster will see a few more changes once these players come back from intake testing, but those placed on the 40 won’t have to deal with waivers due to COVID rules. The Astros have shown their frustrations with how MLB has handled their personal health and safety protocols from players like Lance McCullers Jr. to GM James Click.
As four Astros make their way back to practice, playing the Rockies could be the best way to bounce back.
While Cristian Javier is still progressing through starts at the alternative training site looking for an endurance boost, the right-hander will still remain listed as a minor leaguer. McCullers was the anticipated starting pitcher for Tuesday’s first game against the Colorado Rockies, but the right-hander won’t be hitting in the bump a mile high. Luis Garcia will get the nod in the first interleague series of the season.
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As the four players returning might not hit the roster in the first game, it is still beneficial playing a non-divisional team that has the worst record in baseball (4-12). While in a rebuilding era, the Rockies aren’t contenders for a difficult NL West. The Astros are expected to face right-hander Jon Gray, who currently has a 2.87 ERA in three starts.
Wednesday’s game will be headlined with a Jose Urquidy vs. Austin Gomber matchup, while this series is a two-game set. Urquidy has had four opportunities at the plate in his career; he has struck out three times.
Interesting enough, Tuesday’s game starts at 7:40 p.m. with Wednesday’s starting at 2:10 p.m. This pitstop in Colorado is the best time for the Astros to get their swings and motions down against arguably the worst team in baseball. For those who are wondering, the Astros sit 7-8 and tied for the fourth spot in the division with some team from Arlington.