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Astros' alternate site closed for test protocols

@brianmctaggart
August 22, 2020

The Astros temporarily shut down their alternate training site in Corpus Christi, Texas, within the past couple of days because of one positive coronavirus test, general manager James Click said on Saturday afternoon. The facility, which houses the players in the Astros’ 60-man player pool who aren’t with the Major

The Astros temporarily shut down their alternate training site in Corpus Christi, Texas, within the past couple of days because of one positive coronavirus test, general manager James Click said on Saturday afternoon.

The facility, which houses the players in the Astros’ 60-man player pool who aren’t with the Major League club, was shut down while the players and staff isolated and the team went through contact tracing and testing protocols. It’s not clear when the facility will reopen, but no one on the Major League club or traveling with the team on the road trip turned up as part of contact tracing protocols.

“As the result of a single positive test, we have shut down the facility out of an abundance of caution while we go through the Major League Baseball-managed contact tracing and testing protocols,” Click said.

The positive test turned up just after the team departed on its road trip on Wednesday.

Pérez makes return
Left-hander Cionel Pérez appeared in a game for the first time this season Friday in the Astros’ 4-3 loss to the Padres at San Diego. Pérez, who threw two-thirds of an inning and allowed no hits and one walk, missed Summer Camp while he recovered COVID-19, he said Saturday.

“I tested positive for COVID-19, but thank God it was a pretty simple process, as everything goes,” Pérez said. “There weren’t any complications, and I didn’t have any symptoms. So it was a pretty easy process.”

Pérez, who appeared in five games for the Astros last year but spent the majority of the season at Triple-A Round Rock, said it took him about 11 days to get the two negative tests required to return to action.

“Thankfully, none of my family got infected with it and it was just me and I didn’t have any symptoms,” said Pérez, who’s married and has two children. “As far as the virus goes, it was a really simple case. And I’m thankful for that.”

Astros manager Dusty Baker didn’t know much about Pérez before Friday, but the 24-year-old could be a weapon against left-handers. He throws a slider and fastball, which averaged 95 mph on Friday.

“I felt really good out there,” Pérez said. “All my pitches, I was able to control the zone, and I’m thankful for that. It felt really good being back out on the field.”

Worth noting
Baker said he talked to third baseman Alex Bregman, who was placed on the 10-day IL on Thursday with right hamstring discomfort. The manager said Bregman is “doing great.” It’s still unclear how long Bregman will need to recover.

Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter.