Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

Houston Astros Ace Could Make Season Debut Friday

The Houston Astros are getting help, as their ace Justin Verlander could make his season debut this Friday.

Astros manager Joe Espada and general manager Dana Brown commented on the injured three-time Cy Young winner on Sunday. Brown said he hoped to have Justin Verlander back for the Astros upcoming road trip, which begins Friday against Washington. “We need to get him back in the rotation,” Brown said. “He’s back.”


Verlander has been sidelined with shoulder inflammation since the start of Spring Training. Despite the inflammation, the 41-year-old future Hall of Famer never stopped throwing and has been cautious in his throwing progression.

Justin made his second rehab start with Double-A Corpus Christi on Saturday, throwing 77 pitches across four innings of work. Verlander has given up 11 earned runs in his two rehab starts while striking out nine. However, the goal of rehab starts for veterans like Verlander is to build his pitch count up, not compete and get outs. As long as he’s feeling good after Saturday’s rehab start, Verlander could be activated off the injured list this week.

Justin Verlander Could Return To Houston On Friday

The Astros could use a healthy veteran arm right now. Houston placed left-hander Framber Valdez on the injured list on Tuesday after being scratched from his start with elbow soreness. Three other Astros starters – José Urquidy, Luis García, and Lance McCullers Jr. – are also on the injured list. Valdez was placed on the 15-day injured list retroactive to April 6 and will start throwing again on Tuesday. Urquidy is not expected back until May after he strained his forearm in camp. García and McCullers both underwent surgery on their throwing arms last season and likely won’t be available until after the All-Star break.

Getting Verlander back this week would be a huge boost to Houston’s struggling rotation, which has the league’s third-worst ERA. Last season, Verlander went 13-8 overall, splitting time between the Mets and the Astros. After losing him to free agency, the Astros reacquired Verlander from the Mets at the trade deadline. He finished the season with a 7-3 record and a 3.31 ERA with the Astros.

Houston has an off day on Thursday, so the earliest Verlander could start would be Friday, with an extra rest day. Astros rookie Spencer Arrighetti made his debut last week and is scheduled to start on Monday against the Braves. Houston could send Arrighetti down afterward and carry an extra bullpen arm before activating Verlander to start on Friday.

Main Photo Credits: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports


More Posts

Send Us A Message