On Monday night, Astros second baseman Jose Altuve tweaked his hamstring late in the game against the Angels. He didn’t play in the Astros’ 7-2 loss on Tuesday, but the hope was that he’d avoid a stint on the injured list. The hamstring obviously hasn’t progressed the way the Astros and Altuve hoped, because Wednesday they placed him on the 10-day IL. Infielder J.J. Matijevic was called up as a corresponding move.
Altuve has struggled to start the 2022 season. In his nine games, he’s hit .167/.268/.250 (55 OPS+) with just one extra-base hit (a home run) and three RBI. He’s struck out 10 times in 36 at-bats. Perhaps a quick reset on the IL will help him straighten things out. Though he hasn’t played at an MVP level since winning the award in 2017, he still hit .278/.350/.489 last season, good for a 127 OPS+.
In the meantime, the Astros could use Aledmys Díaz, Niko Goodrum or Matijevic at second base.
Whenever he gets into a game, Matijevic will be making his MLB debut. The 2017 second-round pick hit .310/.420/.714 with three doubles, a triple, four homers, 10 RBI and nine runs in 11 games for Triple-A Sugar Land.
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The Astros enter Wednesday’s game with a 6-5 record. Altuve isn’t the only offensive player struggling. The Astros rank ninth of 15 AL teams in runs scored while sitting 12th in average and ninth in on-base percentage. After Wednesday’s game against the Angels, they’ll host the Blue Jays for a three-game weekend series.