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Astros to play it safe with Marisnick's knee

Outfielder dealing with soreness, but had clean MRI; Altuve, McHugh on track to return soon
@brianmctaggart
June 15, 2019

HOUSTON -- Astros outfielder Jake Marisnick is likely out for a few days after leaving Friday’s win over the Blue Jays with left knee pain. Marisnick slipped while making a throw from the outfield during the game and later looked uncomfortable running out a ground ball, prompting manager AJ Hinch

HOUSTON -- Astros outfielder Jake Marisnick is likely out for a few days after leaving Friday’s win over the Blue Jays with left knee pain. Marisnick slipped while making a throw from the outfield during the game and later looked uncomfortable running out a ground ball, prompting manager AJ Hinch to pull him.

On Saturday, Marnisnick said that an MRI showed no structural damage, though he was dealing with some pain and swelling. Marisnick wanted to stay in the game and he said he was available to play Saturday, but Hinch said he wouldn’t play and likely would sit out on Sunday, as well. Hinch wasn’t planning on starting Marisnick on Monday at Cincinnati, even before he tweaked his knee.

“He may have a couple of days off, but I think we’ve avoided a major issue,” Hinch said. “I say that without knowing fully how he’s going to respond to the next 24 hours. Our doctors evaluated him and our trainers are pretty confident this is a day-to-day thing.”

“It’s a nagging thing I’ve been dealing with and it kind of flared up a little bit more,” Marisnick said.

Altuve, McHugh nearing returns

Astros second baseman José Altuve went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts in his first Minor League rehab outing Friday night for Triple-A Round Rock, which lost to Reno, 16-3. Right-hander Collin McHugh also threw his first rehab outing in the game, allowing two runs, one hit and one walk with one strikeout in two-thirds of an inning (19 pitches).

Altuve, who’s been out since May 11 with a left hamstring strain, could return to the Astros during next week’s series against the Reds in Cincinnati. He went on a Minor League rehab late last month, but dealt with right leg fatigue and soreness.

“He was a little rusty getting back on the field and getting back up and running again,” Hinch said. “Jose felt really good, which was a good sign. Even watching the video of his at-bats, he was much more comfortable in the batter’s box. He made a great play at second base, and he was moving around and being agile which is very important for him. In general, it’s more important given his lower body issues.”

Altuve will take Saturday off and play again for the Express on Monday. McHugh, who was back in Houston on Saturday, will throw his second outing Monday for Round Rock as he works his way back from right elbow discomfort.

“He didn’t finish his inning, but he got his pitch count to 19, 20 pitches,” Hinch said. “He reported that he felt fine today.”

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