Jaffe: Injury has interrupted the rare Jose Altuve slump

From SABR member Jay Jaffe at FanGraphs on May 14, 2019:

A rough stretch for Jose Altuve has hit a new bump. The Astros’ second baseman, who has been scuffling considerably for the past three weeks, left Friday night’s game during the first inning shortly after legging out an infield hit. While manager A.J. Hinch called the injury a “slight strain of his hamstring,” the team has opted to play it safe by placing the 29-year-old former MVP on the injured list for just the second time in his career, thus forestalling the end of his current slump.

Via MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart, “Altuve said he felt his muscle tighten when he was running to first base and then became worried when the hamstring continued to bother him while he was getting his secondary lead off first base.” Rather than sit Altuve for a few days, the Astros opted to replace him on the active roster. Said Hinch:

“When you have these three-, five-, seven-day injuries, they always last longer than you think. We’ve gone through this with [Altuve] before. We’ve gone through this with Alex [Bregman]. We went through this with George [Springer]. These quads and hammies and calves, as soon as you think it’s four or five days, you probably should err on the side of caution and put them on the injured list and play with a full team.”

With a 27-15 record and a 6.5-game lead in the AL West through Monday, the Astros can afford to be cautious, particularly if the break provides Altuve a chance to reset his season.

Read the full article here: https://blogs.fangraphs.com/injury-has-interrupted-the-rare-jose-altuve-slump/

Originally published: May 17, 2019. Last Updated: May 17, 2019.