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Astros switching up starting rotation; Oberholtzer to make rehab start

Astros manager A.J. Hinch is changing up the starting rotation schedule ahead of the weekend series with White Sox.

Rob Carr/Getty Images

Astros manager A.J. Hinch is attempting to prevent his bullpen arms from being overtaxed going forward. Dallas Keuchel will move up one spot and pitch on Saturday against the White Sox and Roberto Hernandez will pitch on six days rest.

The backend of Houston's rotation at the moment is prone to having long days for the bullpen. Rookie Lance McCullers and veterans Roberto Hernandez and Scott Feldman have pitched through the seventh inning just three times out of a combined 20 starts. That includes five starts where one of the three starters didn't get out of the fifth inning.

On the other hand, Dallas Keuchel has pitched through seven innings in seven of his ten total starts this season. Keuchel will pitch on normal four days of rest on Saturday.

McCullers appears to have earned his spot in the rotation, allowing three runs over 10 2/3 innings.

Hernandez will be held back a day, and pitch on six days of rest. Hernandez is 12-17 with a 4.86 ERA in 35 careers starts on six days or more rest.


The interesting part of this dance in the Astros starting rotation is when or if Brett Oberholzter returns to the rotation. Oberholzter will make at least two starts with Triple A Fresno before any decisions are made. Oberholzter has struggled with blister issues since Spring Training. He was put on the 15-Day disabled list after making one start for the Astros on May 13.

The Astros bullpen appears set with a long man and two lefties. There doesn't appear to be a spot for Oberholzter unless McCullers is sent down.