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Astros Crawfish Boil: September 2, 2015

Your one-stop daily shop for all news for your Houston Astros - and beyond.

Jonathan Villar was one of three (including Josh Fields and Joe Thatcher) to be called up to the Astros on September 1st, 2015
Jonathan Villar was one of three (including Josh Fields and Joe Thatcher) to be called up to the Astros on September 1st, 2015
Peter Llewellyn-USA TODAY Sports

Astros News:

Rehabbing Astros OF George Springer could be activated from DL as soon as Friday - Ultimate Astros
George Springer, who is on a rehab assignment at Class AA Corpus Christi, is scheduled to speak with manager A.J. Hinch about his status after the Hooks’ game Thursday. Unless there are setbacks, it would not be surprising if Springer is cleared to be activated from the disabled list Friday.

Logan Morrison's two-run homer leads Mariners |
HOUSTON -- Logan Morrison socked a two-run pinch-hit home run with two outs in the eighth inning off reliever Pat Neshek -- the third homer of the game for Seattle -- to break a tie and lead the Mariners to a 7-5 win over the Astros on Tuesday night at Minute Maid Park. Franklin Gutierrez and Mark Trumbo also homered for the Mariners, who twice squandered two-run leads. Jake Marisnick's homer in the fourth tied the game at 3, but Trumbo's third homer in his last two games, a two-run blast in the fifth, put the Mariners ahead, 5-3.

Joe Thatcher called up; Tony Sipp's back hurt |
HOUSTON -- Home in Kokomo, Ind., after he was designated for assignment on July 21, Joe Thatcher fielded calls from a few Major League teams who wanted the ninth-year southpaw's services in their bullpen. Using the unplanned summer at home to unwind and regroup, Thatcher instead accepted his assignment to the Astros' Triple-A club in Fresno, Calif.

Eight Astros to be in Arizona Fall League |
HOUSTON -- A.J. Reed will be playing baseball in October, but not with the Astros. Reed, who leads the Minor Leagues in home runs (33), RBIs (119), runs (109) and OPS (1.067), joins outfielder Derek Fisher and third baseman J.D. Davis to headline the group of players the Astros will send to the Arizona Fall League. Reed is the Astros' fifth-ranked prospect, Fisher is eighth and Davis is 12th.

Astros catcher Jason Castro gets good news on injured quad, eyeing quick return from DL - Ultimate Astros
Castro is optimistic he’ll be able to return when his 15 days on the disabled list are up. “I think that’ll be our kind of timeline, that’s what we’ll shoot for as far as how I’m going to progress,” Castro said. “One thing I’m kind of pleasantly surprised about is how much better it does feel than I thought it would. … I’ve been happy with how it’s been progressing so far.”

Astros starter Scott Feldman leaves Tuesday’s game due to shoulder issue - Ultimate Astros
Astros righthander Scott Feldman exited in the third inning with discomfort in his right shoulder Tuesday night against the Mariners at Minute Maid Park.

A.J. Hinch’s coaching staff could be getting pair of additions in coming weeks - Ultimate Astros
AAA Fresno manager Tony DeFrancesco and Class AA Corpus Christi manager Rodney Linares are likely to be invited for coaching stints with the Astros after their respective teams are done with the playoffs this month.

A.J. Hinch tweaks pitching rotation ahead of key series with Minnesota Twins - Ultimate Astros
A.J. Hinch set up his rotation for the upcoming Twins series with Collin McHugh starting Friday, Lance McCullers on Saturday and lefthander Dallas Keuchel on Sunday. Hinch wants to keep Keuchel and fellow lefthander Scott Kazmir on close to regular rest as much as possible. Mike Fiers, who won Saturday, will likely start against Oakland on more than a week of rest.

Different roads see Josh Fields, Joe Thatcher reunited in Astros bullpen - Ultimate Astros
“Being able to retain Thatcher, we’re very fortunate,” Hinch said Tuesday. “He’s a major league pitcher, he’s been through every scenario possible. He made our team (out of spring training), he did well for us.”

Around the League:

Notable September Call-Ups - MLB Trade Rumors
Here are some more of the notable call-ups (for various reasons)…

Why Mike Trout Ain’t Right | FanGraphs Baseball
The Angels ascended to first place in the AL West in the final game before the All-Star break. A week and a half later, they had a two-game lead, and since that point, they’ve lost the two-game lead, and then several more games beyond that, in a team-wide collapse that’s threatened to leave the Angels on the outside of the playoff picture.

Giants Designate Justin Maxwell For Assignment - MLB Trade Rumors
The Giants announced that they have designated outfielder Justin Maxwell for assignment in order to clear space on the 40-man roster for September callup Nick Noonan.

Mariners Dismiss Jack Zduriencik 2.0 | FanGraphs Baseball
Since the start of the 2009 season, no team has won fewer games than the Astros, and during that window they’ve picked up a new general manager. And now so have the Mariners, with the fifth-fewest.

West Notes: Zduriencik, Profar, Morneau, Angels - MLB Trade Rumors
Notes from the AL West (MLBTR)

NERD Game Scores for Tuesday, September 1, 2015 | FanGraphs Baseball
Devised originally in response to a challenge issued by viscount of the internet Rob Neyer, and expanded at the request of nobody, NERD scores represent an attempt to summarize in one number (and on a scale of 0-10) the likely aesthetic appeal or watchability, for the learned fan, of a player or team or game.

The Change: Scouting With Pitch Type Whiff Rates | FanGraphs Fantasy Baseball
We know, not only because of Taylor Jungmann, but also from the Brewers’ starter, that not all pitches thrown seldomly with good results will remain as successful when thrown more often. Sometimes pitches are successful because they are rare and unexpected.

The Rangers Got Themselves a Bullpen | FanGraphs Baseball
Let’s face it — the second wild card isn’t going to a great team. The Rangers aren’t a great team. They’re becoming a solid team, however.