Houston Astros designated hitter Yordan Alvarez’s absence continues as the team adapts in terms of strategy. How close is a return to the lineup?
The Houston Astros were able to grab another win the column, making them 2-0 on the season, marking them being the only undefeated team in the American League, which is remarkable considering how this team has continued to persecuted for their role in a sign-stealing scandal that has rocked the baseball world.
This would’ve been the narrative for this season as they would’ve received a huge opposition front by fans, detractors of the Houston Astros’ 2017 World Series legitimacy and also getting plunked by pitches left and right.
The latter has already happened — Carlos Correa was the first person to get hit by a pitch of season when Taijuan Walker got him at the bottom of the 4th. Later in the game, at the bottom of the 7th, Yuli Gurriel was hit in the elbow by Bryan Shaw making two Houston Astros’ already being a part of the Mariners’ strategy.
This is to be expected and the Houston Astros better have pretty darn good protective gear, especially with fans not being in attendance because teams are going to be vicious enough to get revenge for what they feel that the team committed an unforgivable sin.
Dusty Baker is the man for the job because he’ll keep this team grounded, he’ll restore order and he commands the respect of the clubhouse with a steady, experienced hand, having participated in more than 5,000 games as a player and manager.
It’ll be a brutal 60-game campaign but if there’s any team that’s up to it, it’s the strength of the Houston Astros and I still think they will be among the last men standing when the dust settles on the season this Fall.
However, one of the most important questions is where is Yordan Alvarez, the AL Rookie of the Year with two games already under the team’s belt? He was pivotal to the team’s success last season and although he didn’t have the postseason that he wanted, his larger-than-life presence will certainly make this team even more potent through these long, yet arduous months of competition.
Alvarez, along with reliable arm Jose Urquidy have both been on the injured list and recently were cleared to return to baseball activities. However, they’ve been sent to Corpus Christi to stay ready for when their number will be called.
The franchise hasn’t provided an exact timeline as to when that will be but I suspect that it will be
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likely within the next week.
They need Yordan in this lineup because I don’t want to just beat the competition, I want them to pummel them, destroy them to absolve any uncertainty to the legitimacy of this team being able to win without cheating. They didn’t have to do that then and they damn sure don’t have to do it now.
For the time being, they’ve been piecing things together with Aledmys Diaz starting at the designated hitter position Opening Night, while Kyle Tucker got the nod yesterday and rookie Taylor Jones will start today, showing the level of confidence Baker has in the young gun.
But none of these guys substitute for what this team has in Yordan and he’ll be needed as the competition gets stiffer, especially when they take on the Los Angeles Dodgers this week. He’ll likely not be available for those games but I’m sure he will be when they rematch in September.
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Let’s hope for the best in terms of a speedy yet safe return of Alvarez and Urquidy so we’ll be fully-loaded for the war that this team will have to wage against the rest of MLB.
They can do it — let’s go Houston Astros.