The Astros made three recent moves that look minor now but will benefit the club soon.
With the Houston Astros‘ bullpen and lineup expecting players’ returns, three recent roster transactions were made. Rehab assignments have been a large topic of discussion, especially with Austin Pruitt and Josh James nearing the ends of theirs.
On the farm, the organization released Hector Velazquez from the Sugar Land Skeeters. There wasn’t a clear cut reason why the veteran pitcher was cut, while he posted a 1.46 ERA through 24.2 innings this season.
The right-hander is on Team Mexico for the Olympic Games, but since he isn’t a 40-man roster player, he wouldn’t have had to be released to play. It’s a weird move honestly, and since we don’t know the terms of his deal, there could be another reason between the lines. He was never added to the roster in 2020 or 2021, even with the pitching staff struggles. It also looks like he has found a new job with the Acereros de Monclova.
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In Florida, Aledmys Diaz officially started his rehab assignment with the FCL Astros on Wednesday. This starts his 30-day rehab clock with one of the lowest teams in the system, and while being out of baseball since his injury on June 5.
For the bolstering the bullpen, Pedro Baez was finally set on his first rehab assignment to Low-A with the Fayetteville Woodpeckers. The right-hander will see his first action since spring training, while most likely burning all 30 days of his assignment climbing the ladder of the minor leagues.
Some might wonder why certain players start with different levels of the system, but in the case of Low-A, the facilities are much nicer and more advanced than that of High-A Asheville. This could be the reasoning that most players skip the Tourists and head to Sugar Land, closer to home.