Injured Astros second baseman Jose Altuve is dealing with fatigue and soreness in his right leg, though it doesn’t appear to be a major issue. The Astros received “encouraging” news after evaluating Altuve on Tuesday, according to manager A.J. Hinch. However, Altuve’s going to need time to “strengthen his lower half,” per Hinch. Altuve added he hopes to return to the diamond “pretty soon” (Twitter links via Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle).
The 29-year-old Altuve has been on the 10-day IL since May 11 because of a problem with his other leg – a left hamstring strain – but looked as if he’d be able to return by Wednesday before this setback occurred. Now, though, it’s unclear when he’ll be ready to come back. Altuve underwent surgery on his right knee last October. Between that and Altuve’s importance to the Astros, who signed the six-time All-Star to a five-year, $151MM extension in March 2018, they’re inclined to take a cautious approach in this situation.
Even with Altuve and George Springer on the IL (and the banged-up Carlos Correa out Monday), the loaded Astros have continued to roll over their competition. They beat the Cubs on Monday to move to 13-4 since Altuve went down. Houston now boasts an elite 37-19 record and a seven-game lead over white-hot Oakland in the AL West.