Now that Bud Norris has been dealt, who's going to take his spot? It will most likely be a familiar face, one that pitched last night. Take it away Brian!
Bo Porter must work pretty fast. (That tweet says seven hours ago, but that's not right, it was about 20 minutes after the Norris trade was announced). Harrell made his return to the Astros rotation last night in place of Norris. He took the loss and continued to have control issues as he walked five, but he only allowed two hits and his stuff seemed to be pretty sharp in the first three innings, getting some noticeable movement on his sinker. It was a home run given up to Chris Davis that did him in and gave the Orioles the lead in the sixth.
It makes a lot of sense to plug Luke back into the rotation; he has more experience than the other options at OKC, something the Astros rotation could use now that Bud is gone. Harrell has had his fair share of issues with the infield shifts and his demotion from the rotation about a month ago was behavior-related, but it's evident that his future is in the rotation, not the bullpen where he posted a 6.35 ERA in four appearances.
There are some decent options to fill a hole in the rotation if another comes up. Harrell could bomb out again, Lyles hasn't been pitching well of late and Bedard was scratched tonight, presumably because of an injury as he wasn't traded and no rumors came up. Just for grins, here are the guys who could be next up from OKC to fill a spot in the rotation.
Okay I'm cheating here; Oberholtzer is with the big league team and starting tonight. It's a spot start for now, but if Bedard does indeed go down with an injury Oberholtzer could be in the conversation to take his spot, especially if he pitches well. This will be his first major league start, and he's only thrown 7.1 major league innings anyway, without any success (7.36 ERA). Not a lot of folks are too high on Obiehockey, but hopefully he'll feel more comfortable back in a starting rotation.
Wojo has been a surprise this season and should be the next starter up from the minors. He's posted a sparkling ERA of 2.67 in 18 starts and has a 5:2 K/BB ratio, with most of his starts coming in OKC.
Peacock's first stint with the major league club didn't go so well, as he started five games after breaking camp with the Astros. He had a short spell with the Astros at the end of May/start of June. He's pitched well in OKC though, starting 13 games with a 2.73 ERA. Peacock will certainly be up with the Astros for a third go-around this season when rosters expand in September, but a rotation spot may not open up for him. At some point though, you just gotta let him fly!