Astros’ 40-man utility depth hits the injured list

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

The Houston Astros suffered another hit to the 40-man roster depth with J.J. Matijevic being placed on the 7-day injured list Saturday by Triple-A Sugar Land. The 26-year-old was last in the Majors on May 2 — the day rosters decreased to 26 players from 28.

Matijevic appeared in two games with the Astros, totaling five trips to the plate. The lefty struck out three times and didn’t reach the base paths in the small sample size of his first major-league stint.

Offering a glove at first base and in left field, Matijevic’s promotion lasted a little over a week, before being optioned back to the Space Cowboys where he is one of the best hitters in the Pacific Coast League.

Joe Perez is also on the 7-day injured list in Corpus Christi, leaving two of the three 40-man minor-league infielders on the shelf. Perez has been out since May 4, and before his placement, the regular corner infielder took a start in right field.

With Astros’ prospects J.J. Matijevic and Joe Perez on the injured list, how is Niko Goodrum faring in Sugar Land?

Goodrum doesn’t have a clear path back to the show with Houston. In 23 plate appearances, the switch-hitter is slashing .214/.522/.286 with nine walks to seven strikeouts, showing an increase in plate discipline.

The Astros’ 26-man roster houses six infielders. Only one of those infielders — Jeremy Peña —can be optioned which isn’t a scenario the club will face.

This doesn’t leave much room for promotion for Matijevic, Perez and Goodrum for the remainder of the year, unless an injury occurs or two of them get the call in September. The 40-man roster will look different in three months, too, so it’s not worth perusing too far ahead regarding those promotions.

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For now, the Astros have Aledmys Diaz and Mauricio Dubon on the active roster. Down the road, Taylor Jones will be activated from the 60-day injured list and likely optioned, while corresponding a move will follow with an ever-changing roster.