The latest coronavirus-related updates from around the game:
- Second baseman Jose Altuve has cleared Major League Baseball’s COVID-19 protocols and will return to the Astros, manager Dusty Baker told Jake Kaplan of The Athletic and other reporters. Baker isn’t sure when Houston will activate Altuve, one of five Astros who went on the COVID list back on April 14. The team has since activated the other four (Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez, Martin Maldonado and Robel Garcia). Altuve had a down 2020 season, but the former AL MVP has gotten off to a fast start this year with a .318/.380/.455 over 50 plate appearances. Houston has started Aledmys Diaz and Alex De Goti at the keystone during Altuve’s absence.
- Twins shortstop Andrelton Simmons has cleared the testing phase and can return to the team, manager Rocco Baldelli informed reporters (including Do-Hyoung Park of MLB.com). Simmons stormed out to a .355/.474/.452 start in 38 PA this year before testing positive for the virus and landing on the IL on April 14. He’ll need time to ramp back up before he can return to the Twins’ lineup, Park notes. Jorge Polanco has received the lion’s share of playing time at short with Simmons out, and he’ll start there again Friday.
- Blue Jays outfielder Teoscar Hernandez has also gotten through the protocols, Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet tweets. Hernandez, who tested positive two weeks ago, has returned to taking batting practice and hitting in the case. Manager Charlie Montoyo said he’s hopeful Hernandez will be back in Toronto’s lineup soon.