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Astros starting pitching injury updates: Keuchel McCullers, Morton, McHugh take steps forward

The beard will travel with the team on the upcoming road trip.

MLB: Houston Astros at Texas Rangers Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Astros’ biggest Achilles heel in 2017 has been the starting pitching health. All five of the Astros projected starting rotation has spent time on or is currently on the disabled list. Collin McHugh has pitched a single inning in 2017, Dallas Keuchel has been dealing with a pinched nerve, Lance McCullers has back issues, Charlie Morton has a right lat strain, and Joe Musgrove has dealt with right shoulder discomfort.

Musgrove has already returned but what about the rest of the rotation — Houston Chronicle beat writer and MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart updated the statuses of the rest.

Dallas Keuchel

The Astros ace went back on the disabled list for the second time in 2017 after nerve issues flared up for the second time. The team isn’t rushing Keuchel back since the pain peaked while he was throwing off the mound.

Keuchel will join the Astros on their upcoming road trip to Oakland and Seattle. Astros manager A.J. Hinch is set with Brad Peacock, Francis Martes, and Mike Fiers. Which would mean Keuchel could return in Seattle.

Lance McCullers

The Astros number two starter Lance McCullers has been dealing with lower back discomfort. He will soon throw a bullpen session to help set his next start. Astros manager A.J. Hinch notes that maybe as soon as the Astros upcoming road trip but didn’t speculate on a date.

Charlie Morton

Charlie Morton will make a rehab start on Thursday with Triple-A Fresno after dealing with a late strain.

Collin McHugh

Collin McHugh was shut down since Spring Training with “dead arm”. He has slowly worked back to throwing and it appears he could soon face live batters for the first time soon if his bullpen sessions go well.

But McHugh is probably still the farthest away from returning among the starters.