Things are looking up for the Houston Astros now. They have won seven straight and 10 of their last 11 as Jose Altuve returns to the lineup. One of the next developments they hope to see is the return of Lance McCullers Jr.
In his rehab from an elbow injury, McCullers has been progressing well and now the Astros have a more surefire date range for when he will be back. Houston general manager Dana Brown said on SportsTalk 790 (h/t Brian McTaggart of MLB.com) that the veteran pitcher could be ready to go around the All-Star weekend, which starts Friday, July 7.
“We’re looking at probably somewhere closer to the All-Star break, or after…depending on whether we can get him built up to start. Certainly, we can use him in the rotation, his veteran presence,” the Astros GM said.
With Framber Valdez crushing it and other starters like Cristian Javier and Hunter Brown also doing well over the course of the season to this point, the Astros could take things slowly with McCullers. Having him recover fully is key, especially since he missed most of last season. Houston is just two games back from the lead in the AL West and with Altuve back, claiming the lead should not be difficult.
Lance McCullers Jr. pitched only 47.2 innings last season and has been one of the Astros' top arms since their scent into a World Series contender. With Jose Urquidy and Luis Garcia also working their way back from injuries, the Astros' pitching staff has to keep it up.