2021 Houston Astros: Jose Altuve Returns To The Lineup

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The 2021 Houston Astros‘ season has been some up of a roller coaster ride, and it is only April. Having spent most of April with the main core of players out due to health and safety protocols, the Astros are finally back to full strength with the return of Jose Altuve back in the lineup.

2021 Houston Astros: Roster News

Having been on the IL since April 14, Jose Altuve returns the lineup on Monday after missing the last 10-games due to COVID-19. Just days prior, Altuve revealed in an interview that he had contracted COVID-19 but said that he felt “really good” throughout his quarantine. After passing two negative tests, Altuve could get back to taking batting practice before games to get back into the swing of things. Having Altuve back at the top of the lineup is the sparkplug this offense needs to get the Astros back over .500.

Pedro Baez has been moved from the 10-day IL to the 60-IL. After signing a two-year contract with the Astros this past offseason, Baez has yet to appear this season. Most of the time away, Baez had contracted COVID-19 which set him back before Opening Day and has also been dealing with shoulder soreness. The Astros were hoping Baez would play a pivotal role in the bullpen this season.

The Astros received good news on Monday regarding starting pitcher Jake Odorizzi. In this last outing on Saturday against the Los Angeles Angels, Odorizzi was removed from the game in the first inning after throwing five pitches due to forearm tightness. Astros rookie Kent Emanuel came in relief and went 8.2 innings to secure his first win in the big leagues.

On Monday, Odorizzi was placed on the 10-day IL with a strained right pronator. Manager Dusty Baker is hoping that Odorizzi’s stint on the IL is short-term. “He’ll miss at least two turns [in the rotation]. And then hopefully he’s ready,” Baker said.

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Main image credit: Embed from Getty Images

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Jeff "Rip" Griffin is a current MLB writer covering the Houston Astros. Rip is also the host of The Rip Griffin Show on Apple Podcasts. Rip holds a Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology, focusing in Sports Management from the University of Houston - Victoria.