Astros bringing Moran along slowly following facial fracture
By Alex Simon
OAKLAND -- The Astros activated catcher Evan Gattis on Saturday before a doubleheader against the A's.
Gattis had been out since Aug. 30 with right wrist soreness, but felt good enough to play in two rehab games with Class A Quad Cities on Thursday and Friday. After the catcher arrived at the Coliseum around noon CT, manager A.J. Hinch said Gattis was available to pinch-hit in either game Saturday and will serve as the designated hitter in Sunday's series finale before catching during the next series in Anaheim.
"I think he's ready to go," Hinch said. "He got a few at bats, he feels healthy. It'll be nice to get him back."
Gattis was one of two players rehabbing at Quad Cities, as third baseman Colin Moran has been recovering from the facial fracture he suffered July 22. The team won the first round of the three-round Midwest League playoffs, and Hinch expects Moran to stay with the team throughout its playoff run.
"We've got 37 guys here, so we've got a nine-man bench. There's not a lot of playing time here, so he can continue to get comfortable playing again and rehabbing, getting his at-bats," Hinch said. "I don't want him to come here and sit. It's a long road to recovery for him, too, where he needs to get a lot of at-bats and feel comfortable playing again -- that first ball that's up and in, the first ball that takes a bad hop.
"He's doing well and he seems like he's upbeat, from what the coaches have said. But it's uncertain, as of right now, as to what he'll contribute here for the rest of the year."
• Right-hander Collin McHugh will continue to get treatment on his right middle fingernail after he left Friday's game when the fingernail started to cut the skin underneath it. Hinch said McHugh's status for his next start is "up in the air," and they'll evaluate him when he throws a bullpen session in Anaheim.
"We don't have to make a decision until well into the Anaheim series, so we'll take our time," Hinch said. "The easiest decision is to give him some time, and we will give him some time and make a conservative decision at some point. We don't have to artificially push him back yet, but once you do that, there is a disruption to the entire rotation when you use six guys."
Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99 This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.