Trout returns to lineup after resting wrist

Trout returns to lineup after resting wrist

HOUSTON -- Angels center fielder Mike Trout returned to the starting lineup for Thursday's series finale against the Astros at Minute Maid Park after missing the last two games with soreness in his left wrist.

Trout took some swings off a tee, then hit some soft toss and "didn't really feel anything" in his ailing wrist, so the Angels started him in center field and in his customary No. 3 spot in the batting order.

"It's big," Trout said. "Not being in there sucks. As a guy that plays every day, you want to be out there to help your team, especially against a team in your division. It was tough, but today is a new day, and I'm in there."

Trout hurt his wrist on a dive attempt in Sunday's fourth inning, but stayed in the game and recorded three more hits, including a grand slam. The left wrist started to bother Trout when he took pregame batting practice on Tuesday (the Angels were off on Monday), but a precautionary MRI came back negative.

The Angels ordered Trout to stay away from hitting on Wednesday, but the 23-year-old said then that his wrist was feeling "a lot better."

Trout finished Thursday's 3-0 walk-off loss 0-for-3 with a walk and a strikeout -- against Pat Neshek in the eighth inning, with two on and two outs in what was still a scoreless game. Afterward, Trout said he felt slight pain in his wrist on a couple of swings, "but it's going to be like that for a couple of days."

He's confident he'll play Friday in the opener of a three-game series against the crosstown Dodgers.

"I should be good," Trout said. "They told me I can't hurt it worse. That's always a good sign. See how it feels. It feels all right right now." 

Worth noting

• The Angels called up right-handed reliever Cory Rasmus on Thursday afternoon, after optioning fellow righty Mike Morin back to Triple-A Salt Lake on Wednesday night. Rasmus, who had a 2.35 ERA in 15 1/3 innings since returning from surgery to repair a core injury, is the brother of Astros outfielder Colby Rasmus.

"I want to see if I can get him out, because last time, it didn't go so well," said Cory, who gave up a double to Colby in their only confrontation, in 2013. "We'll see what happens."

• For Thursday's matchup against Scott Kazmir, the Angels started left fielder Shane Victorino in the leadoff spot and designated hitter C.J. Cron in the sixth spot, an indication of how Angels manager Mike Scioscia will line things up against lefties. At full health, Johnny Giavotella would probably bat ninth.

• Houston native Taylor Featherston started his first Major League game at Minute Maid Park, home to the Astros, a team he grew up rooting for. Featherston had about 40 family and friends in the stands and said he was "pumped. Really pumped."

• Featherston, a Rule 5 Draft pick, would have to be offered back to the Rockies if the Angels want to take him off the active roster. But indications are that they want to keep him the rest of the year, which pretty much means they won't be adding a veteran infielder.

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.