Astros’ Pitching Injuries Have Been an Issue All Season

Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /

Luis Garcia’s exit in Game 2 was the right-hander’s first tie to any sort of injury for all of 2021 and his first time leaving that early into a ballgame since April 25. Garcia was hiding a knee injury from the team, which has also been a reoccurring issue on the staff.

The Houston Astros‘ pitching plan was thrown off course with Jake Odorizzi taking over, but pitching injuries have been a major factor all season. Jose Urquidy hit the injured list twice in 2021, and while not pitching live for over two weeks, his Monday start was no where close to the right-hander’s potential.

Zack Greinke is now slated to start Game 4, and while facing a neck injury at the end of the regular season, the right-hander isn’t stretched out to go deep into ballgames. Cristian Javier is also available in long-relief with three days off, as his rotational spot was bumped months ago.

Pitching injuries have been an issue all season for the Astros, but how many 40-man roster arms fell to the injured list this season?

The Astros have seen some major adjustments come to their 40-man roster this season with the acquisitions of relievers and the promotions of certain players. But now, it is evident how much injuries have affected the Astros’ play and front office moves.

Here is a list of all Astros pitchers that fell to the injured list in 2021:

Lance McCullers Jr.

Jose Urquidy

Framber Valdez

Jake Odorizzi

Zack Greinke

Forrest Whitley

Tyler Ivey

Kent Emanuel

Bryan Abreu

Justin Verlander

Pedro Baez

Josh James

Rafael Montero

Enoli Paredes

Andre Scrubb

Brooks Raley

Jairo Solis

Blake Taylor

Austin Pruitt*

Joe Smith*

*No longer with team

This can be a testament to how these pitchers condition over the offseason/season, loss of development in 2020 for the prospects on this list and overall stress put on hurler’s arms, but it shouldn’t be a shot at manager Dusty Baker’s pitch management.

Baker had a reputation of leaving starting pitchers in games for too long in his managerial career, especially with the Chicago Cubs in the early 2000s. But now, pitching is backed by computers and extra guidance from Brent Strom, so there isn’t much blame to throw on the coaching staff that gave a lot of rest days to players in 2021.

Next. Astros need to thrive in the seventh inning once again. dark

We don’t have access to see any increase of pitching injuries in the league over the last five seasons, but with 20 Astros’ pitchers being on the injured list at least once this season, there can be concerns with their future.