Astros' Peacock feeling healthy in return

Astros' Peacock feeling healthy in return

BRADENTON, Fla. -- Astros right-hander Brad Peacock said he can't remember the last time he pitched in a game when he was fully healthy prior to Sunday's Grapefruit League start in an 11-8 Astros win over the Pirates at McKechnie Field, where he threw 1 2/3 innings.

"It's been a while," he said. "To tell you the truth, I can't remember the last time, you know, I felt fully healthy. It's going to be fun, and just have to get the location down, for sure."

Peacock, 28, has battled a handful of injuries since the Astros acquired him prior to the 2013 season. In the offseason, he underwent surgery to remove bone spurs in his back, alleviating pressure on a pinched nerve that limited him to seven total innings last year. He had hip surgery the previous offseason after appearing in 28 games (24 starts) for Houston in 2014.

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"My body felt great today," said Peacock, who hadn't pitched in a game since going two innings in a Double-A rehab start on June 11, 2015. "The most important thing right now is just being healthy every time I go out there, and feeling good."

Astros manager A.J. Hinch said Peacock was rusty.

"He was a little erratic early, a few too many walks," Hinch said. "He ran out of some pitches. Being in competition again and having been out for almost a full year, it was good for him to break a sweat and really get back competitive again. I think he'll be better next time out."

Peacock won't crack the Astros' rotation in the spring, but he could provide valuable depth and experience in Triple-A. Wondering where he fits in the picture and what the immediate future may hold takes a back seat at this point to his health.

On Sunday, he said his offspeed stuff was "decent," but lamented the lack of fastball location. He walked three and allowed two runs and three hits against Pittsburgh.

"I felt excited just to be out there," he said.

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com 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.