McHugh, Salazar back in action on MLB.TV

July 21st, 2017

As good as the Astros are, they might get even better tonight with the return of .
McHugh will make his first start of 2017 tonight against the Orioles after being sidelined with a nagging elbow injury. With the non-waiver Trade Deadline just over a week away, McHugh's performance tonight could affect how the Houston front office plays its hand. A solid outing from McHugh may convince Astros brass not to pull the trigger on a frontline starter like .
That all depends, though, on whether McHugh can stay pain-free and effective against the Orioles' Chris Tillman, who's struggled this year but is coming off a quality start. We'll find out at 7:05 p.m. ET at Camden Yards, streaming live on MLB.TV.
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Here's what else to watch for throughout the day (all times ET):
Resurgent Rich: ATL@LAD, 9:10 p.m.
Thirty-seven-year-old Rich Hill and his nasty curveball are showing the Dodgers why they invested in him last offseason, to the tune of $48 million over three years. Despite enduring four separate DL stints due to blisters this year, a now-calloused Hill has emerged with a 0.95 ERA in July, yielding just two runs and a single walk against 29 strikeouts this month.

Hill's opponent tonight, the Braves' , comes with some qualifications of his own. Teheran, a full 11 years younger than Hill, struggled in his last start but is a true road warrior. He holds the fifth-best road ERA in the National League at 2.53, and a strong outing tonight at Chavez Ravine could boost his portfolio heading into the Trade Deadline.
Strutting their stuff: TOR@CLE, 7:10 p.m.
Once a pair of baseball's most highly-touted pitching prospects, and face off tonight at Progressive Field with an interesting wrinkle: It's Salazar's first start in nearly two months. Inflammation in his throwing shoulder has had him riding the bench this summer. Stroman, meanwhile, has established himself as the ace of a struggling Toronto club and hasn't allowed more than three runs in a month's worth of starts.

Central challenge in Chicago: STL@CHC, 4:05 p.m.
Two of baseball's more decorated veteran pitchers, and , meet in a matinee at the Friendly Confines. This probably won't be their most famous meeting -- that honor goes to the time the two opened up the 2013 World Series, with Lester in a Red Sox uniform. Lester won that one -- and walked away with a ring, to boot. He'll seek a similar outcome today as his Cubs continue their second-half charge back to 2016 form -- you know, the one that earned Lester his third World Series ring.