Altuve (knee) to IL; Urquidy, Peacock up

September 5th, 2020

The Astros placed second baseman on the 10-day injured list on Saturday as the club dealt with the reality that his right knee sprain will need more than a day or two to heal. He’s eligible to return Sept. 14.

Altuve injured the knee during a slide into third base on Thursday. Also of concern is that it’s the same knee that limited him the last two months of the 2018 season and required offseason surgery.

“He felt a little better [Saturday],” manager Dusty Baker said, “but can we afford to play short for possibly another week? We’re hoping that he's ready to come back a couple of days before [he's eligible], so he can get some swings in and some running in and feel 100%, not only physically but psychologically. That’s the hard thing about any injury, and especially in an area where you had hurt it before.”

Altuve’s injury comes at a time when he’d finally begun to look like the six-time All-Star he is. He was going so badly in mid-August that he asked Baker to drop him in the lineup.

Baker obliged, hitting him seventh once and sixth three other times. Since then, he was hitting .333 in 13 games and had raised his batting average after from .168 to .224.

In a season when the Astros' pitching staff has been decimated by injuries, Baker was philosophical about more bad news.

“It’s a big blow, but what do you do?” he said. “You can either complain about it or go ahead and try to adjust. The other guys just got to pick it up the way we’ve done all year.”

Jack Mayfield got the start at second in Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader against the Angels, and he will probably split time with Aledmys Díaz until Altuve returns

Roster moves
Amid a flurry of other roster moves besides Altuve, the Astros activated right-handers Brad Peacock and Jose Urquidy and added right-hander Humberto Castellanos as the 29th man for Saturday’s doubleheader. Meanwhile, left-hander Cionel Perez was optioned to the taxi squad, and right-hander Rogelio Armenteros was transferred to the 45-day injured list.

Raising awareness
The Astros and Angels wore gold ribbon decals and wristbands on Saturday as part of Childhood Cancer Awareness Day. Throughout the sport, teams donated gear, met with patients and raised money to fight the disease that’s the leading cause of death by disease among children in the United States and Canada.

For the fifth consecutive year, MLB and its clubs raised awareness for childhood cancer during all games on Saturday for a special league-wide day in home ballparks. MLB’s “Childhood Cancer Awareness Day,” held during Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in collaboration with Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C), combined a visual and ceremonial demonstration of support for the cause with outreach to local hospitals treating young patients in their communities.

Welcome back
Peacock, having missed the first 37 games with bicep tendinitis, was happy to be back in uniform after a stint at the team’s alternate training site in Corpus Christi, Texas

He was slowed by a nerve issue during Spring Training, with the bicep tendinitis sidelining him as he attempted to ramp back up from the layoff. He said the area responded to an injection.

“I actually responded to the shot really well this time, so I was pretty excited about that,” he said. “I knew it was going to be good. This was different, for sure.”