HOUSTON | Though the Washington Nationals lost three of their final four games entering the All-Star break, they still were one of the hottest teams in baseball. The coin that had flipped against them in so many one-run games early in the year had turned in their favor.
Though the Washington Nationals lost three of their final four games entering the All-Star break, they still were one of the hottest teams in baseball. The coin that had flipped against them in so many one-run games early in the year had turned in their favor.
The scene was an unfamiliar one: Jordan Zimmermann, the Washington Nationals' 25-year-old ace-in-the-making, craning his neck as he watched the ball crack off the Houston Astros' bats.
Sunk into the left-field wall at Minute Maid Park is the visiting team’s bullpen. For the Nationals on Monday night, it may as well have been empty.
Watching Laynce Nix bounce a two-run single over the head of Houston Astros first baseman Carlos Lee on Monday night, it was hard to believe the slugging left fielder was close to being left off the Nationals' Opening Day roster.
The Houston Astros traded second baseman Jeff Keppinger to the San Francisco Giants for two Double-A pitchers on Tuesday. Houston also purchased the contract of infielder Jose Altuve from Double-A Corpus Christi, and Astros manager Brad Mills said he will get significant playing time at second base.
Major league teams are reviewing stadium safety following the death of a fan at a Texas Rangers game last week, while still encouraging players to toss balls into the stands.
Businessman Jim Crane has stayed out of the spotlight since the announcement that his investment group had reached a deal to buy the Houston Astros for $680 million.
Houston Astros reliever Brandon Lyon is planning to have surgery on his pitching shoulder next week and likely is out for the season.