No timetable for Bregman's 'frustrating' injury

June 19th, 2021

When Astros third baseman Alex Bregman sat down to speak with reporters Saturday afternoon, he was clearly still dealing with the frustration of being shelved with another injury.

On Wednesday, Bregman suffered a left quad strain. On Thursday, he was placed on the 10-day injured list. And on Saturday, the team still had no timetable for Bregman’s recovery plan.

“I wish I knew how to read the MRI,” Bregman said. “I don't, but honestly, there's no timetable, really. It sucks, it's unfortunate, but just gonna trust the rehab process.”

“You can't have a timeframe, because it depends on when his body heals,” Astros manager Dusty Baker said. “I'd like to give you a timeframe so I'd have one in my mind, but we don't [have one]. Everything's an approximate. All I can tell you is it's gonna be a while.”

Outside of the last two seasons (he also strained his right hamstring late in 2020), Bregman said he’s had a relatively healthy career and took pride “in being able to show up and [play] every single day.” But now, with Houston on a 14-4 stretch that’s earned them the fifth-best record in the American League heading into Saturday’s matchup against the White Sox, Bregman is forced to rehab his second leg injury in as many years.

“I know how much work I've put in in the offseason and Spring Training and the season,” he said. “It's disappointing. I felt like I was about a centimeter away from turning the corner and getting hot.”

Bregman said he woke up Saturday with a lot less soreness than he had over the previous three days, which he took as a sign that the rehab process was off to a good start.

Knowing Bregman’s recovery will be a weeks-long (and possibly even a months-long) process, though, the Astros have taken an all-hands-on-deck approach to fill third base in his absence. Abraham Toro went 3-for-6 with a home run and four RBIs over the past two games. Robel García was penciled in at the spot to start Saturday, and even first baseman Yuli Gurriel was seen getting work at third base before the game.

With the Astros seeking to gain ground on the AL West-leading A’s, a healthy Bregman would’ve been a big part of the equation. For now, time will tell when Bregman will actually make a healthy return to the roster.

“This is definitely frustrating, to say the least,” Bregman said, “but I'll be back, and I'll be back stronger than ever.”

Houston hosts USA Softball national team

Minute Maid Park hosted the USA Softball Women’s National Team on Friday, a roster made up of 15 players who will represent the country at the Olympic Games this summer.

The team is currently on the “Stand Beside Her” tour, presented by Major League Baseball, and it is slated to compete in a two-day series of exhibition games at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas, in preparation for the start of the Tokyo Games in late July.

When the Olympics were postponed last year, nothing about USA Softball’s future was certain. It remained to be seen if the roster named in October 2019 would be the same roster sent to Tokyo in 2021. USA Softball quickly confirmed in May 2020 that the roster would stay intact, however, and rather than the following year being one full of uncertainty, the players were given another year to gel as a team.

“The pandemic kind of just gave us a space and time to really pause and reflect on, ‘What do we want our team to look like? What do we want our team to play like? How do we want to remember this entire experience?’” outfielder Haylie McCleney told MLB Network earlier this year. “It gave us all a fresh perspective, and I think our team is a lot better for it now than we were where we were at this time last year.”

MLB has worked with USA Softball since 2015, backing the sport that lost its spot in the Olympics after 2008. Though softball is not in the lineup for the 2024 Games and isn’t guaranteed a spot in the 2028 Games, either, MLB’s support of the organization on and off the field has continued to help the sport grow across the country.

“They’re not only supporting us for our tour; they’re supporting our whole careers,” outfielder Michelle Moultrie said in January 2020 about MLB’s support. “They want us to have resources and contacts after we’re done playing, and we can really see how deep the support is for the women here.”