Keuchel available in 'pen? Hinch plays coy

Keuchel available in 'pen? Hinch plays coy

KANSAS CITY -- Astros manager A.J. Hinch wouldn't say whether he'd have ace left-hander Dallas Keuchel available in the bullpen if needed in Wednesday's Game 5 of the American League Division Series against the Royals at 8 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1.

Keuchel, who gave up one run and five hits over seven innings in Houston's 4-2 win in Game 3 on Sunday at Minute Maid Park, could conceivably be available to pitch an inning or two. Hinch said he hoped starter Collin McHugh pitched the entire game, but he wouldn't address Keuchel.

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Game Date Result
Gm 1 Oct. 8 HOU 5, KC 2
Gm 2 Oct. 9 KC 5, HOU 4
Gm 3 Oct. 11 HOU 4, KC 2
Gm 4 Oct. 12 KC 9, HOU 6
Gm 5 Oct. 14 KC 7, HOU 2

"I'm going to have all hands on deck," Hinch said. "We know tomorrow's a win-or-go-home game. And you know what? It's a win-or-go-home [game] for them, too. It's not just win or go home for us. So whether or not Keuchel's available or what the plan is, we'll have to tune in tomorrow night and find out."

Keuchel wasn't available for comment.

Hinch did say he would have left-handed starter Scott Kazmir on call in the bullpen, along with right-handed starter Mike Fiers, who has been available in long relief but yet to pitch in the series. With a day off Tuesday, the rest of the Astros' bullpen should be available as well.

"I've been ready for anything this whole postseason," Fiers said. "The starters have been pitching well, and hopefully Collin can continue that tomorrow and they won't need me out of the 'pen. It's been that way, where anything can happen in baseball, so I guess I'm down there just in case. I just want to continue what we've been doing, and if they don't use me, it's a good sign."

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.