Astros News: Opening Day roster takes shape, Michael Brantley returns, Penn Murfee

Opening Day is finally here, so here is the latest goings on with the Astros before the 2024 season gets started.
Championship Series - Texas Rangers v Houston Astros - Game One
Championship Series - Texas Rangers v Houston Astros - Game One / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages

The Houston Astros have managed to weather spring training quite well all things considered. Now, our long nightmare without baseball is about to end as Opening Day has finally arrived with the Astros set to take on the Yankees at 4:10 PM EST for the first game of the 2024 season. You love to see it.

Ahead of the season's first contest against a hated AL rival, we have gotten a number of tidbits as to what Houston's Opening Day roster will look like. Word got out that Parker Mushinski made the team last night and the widely expected decision to carry Ronel Blanco in their rotation was made after Blanco shoved in his final spring start on the same day that his daughter was born. A couple roster decisions are still outstanding, but things are definitely taking shape.

Astros News: Michael Brantley and Josh Reddick to throw first pitches this season

While not exactly the return for Michael Brantley that some wanted, it looks like the former Astros star and leader will be taking the field in a very different role to start the 2024 season. Now that Brantley is officially retired as a player, the Astros decided to have him throw out the first pitch of the 2024 season. 50 Cent gets the Opening Day honor of yelling "Play Ball!".

Brantley isn't the only former Astro that is returning to participate in pre-game festivities early in the 2024 season. Josh Reddick, who played for the Astros from 2017-2020, will throw out the first pitch for the second game of the season.

Astros News: Houston claims Penn Murfee off waivers on eve of 2024 season

Dana Brown and the rest of the front office are leaving no stone unturned and making sure to take advantage of every opportunity they can, it appears. With Kendall Graveman out for the entire 2024 after needing shoulder surgery, Houston decided to use his roster spot to claim reliever Penn Murfee after he was put on the waiver wire by the Braves earlier this week.

This is very much a long-term play for Houston. Murfee has garnered a good amount of interest from teams this offseason as he has bounced around a good bit, but he isn't going to be pitching anytime soon as he is still recovering from elbow surgery. However, Murfee still has plenty of team control left and assuming he can get back to his form before his injury, he is a guy that should give the Astros' bullpen a boost upon his return with his ability to miss bats.

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