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Is Justin Verlander’s early-season injury to blame for the Astros’ latest rotation loss?

Is Justin Verlander’s early-season injury to blame for the Astros’ latest rotation loss?

Is Justin Verlander’s early-season injury to blame for the Astros’ latest rotation loss?

The Houston Astros have really been through it when it comes to injuries to their starting pitching staff. They entered the season hoping that Luis Garcia and Lance McCullers Jr. could bounce back from long-term injuries, but now Justin Verlander is dealing with his second injury of the year, Jose Urquidy and Cristian Javier have both had their seasons end. elbow surgery, and JP France suffered a brutal rehab setback with a shoulder injury. In short, the Astros’ pitching staff is not having a good time.

Unfortunately, that situation only got worse on Wednesday when it was revealed that France had undergone surgery on his ailing shoulder and is now officially out for at least this season. While this isn’t a complete surprise, as having a shoulder setback while rehabbing is rarely a good sign, what was more interesting was general manager Dana Brown’s candor about how the Astros handled France’s injury from beginning.

Specifics on the exact nature of France’s injuries and surgery are few and far between at this point, though we do know it will be performed by Dr. Keith Meister (who is quickly becoming baseball’s go-to surgeon) and should take place at this point. coming on monday We also know that France will miss the rest of the 2024 regular season, although betting on an absence longer than that is probably wise as shoulder operations often take a long time to recover from.

However, the report also included some pretty interesting and frankly worrying comments from Brown, who indicated that France’s shoulder has been bothering him this spring, but the team has pushed him a bit to recover as their rotation has been in a precarious position to start the season with Verlander also dealing with an injury. As a result, France overcame the discomfort, and now the Astros are without him for the rest of the year … and Verlander is out again.

Ultimately, how the Astros approach this development will depend heavily on Verlander’s recovery from neck soreness. France had already been optioned to the minors and was not in their game plan for most of the season. However, if Verlander’s injury proves to be a long-term problem, the lack of pitching depth caused in part by France’s injury could prove costly as the season progresses unless Houston adds some pitching help before exchange deadline.

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