Max Stassi is making progress from his concussion while Jason Castro’s knee condition is a wait and see approach.
Stassi took live batting practice on the field for the first time on Saturday and on Sunday was catching his third bullpen session. Castro is still recovering from a sprained right knee. Counting Sunday, the Astros’ All-Star catcher has missed 10 of the last 13 games. Castro had a cyst in his right knee drained on Sept. 3, a day after he injured the knee against the Twins.
On Sunday Stassi caught a bullpen session from Brad Peacock. Stassi is pleased to finally get in some activity.
“A lot of sitting around for the past two, three weeks,” said Stassi. “It’s exciting to be out there and learning the staff a little, even though it’s only bullpen. Learning how their stuff breaks, movement on their pitches. I’m enjoying it. Hopefully I’ll get out there this year.”
Astros manager Bo Porter is hopeful of Stassi catching before the end of the season, with only 14 games remaining, and he said that Castro will get behind the plate only if he’s 100 percent healthy.
“(Stassi) is progressing along quite well,” said Porter. “Hopefully we can get him clearance, for at least get him in a few games before the end of the season. That would be good. We haven’t had a chance to see him catch.
“He was scheduled to catch that next day and ended up having the concussion, being hit by the ball. It will be good to get him back.”
The two games Stassi played with the Astros he was the designated hitter. Porter said it would be important for Stassi to catch a game in the remaining two weeks, to learn the pitchers.
“That was part of the reason why we called him up when we called him up,” said Porter. “This is valuable time, especially if he can get playing time and catch some of our guys. That will help him going into his offseason getting ready for spring training next year.”
There’s a possibility Castro could catch again this season.
“There’s still a chance because he’s making progress,” said Porter. “For me, he’s going to have to be 100 percent healthy to get behind the plate and catch. He may not have to be 100 percent to hit or DH. We’ll take it day to day.”
Castro said he’s been at ease since finding out that his injury isn’t overly serious.
“I’m not really concerned. Structurally everything is fine,” said Castro.