The Astros will have a big decision to make this weekend as infielder Jeff Keppinger returns to full health. General manager Ed Wade says that he expects last year’s starting second baseman to be back by the weekend:
“I’m optimistic by the weekend he’ll be back,” Wade said. “We asked him to extend his stay at Oklahoma City to get back-to-back games under his belt. If everything moves in a straight line, we’re looking at Friday or Saturday.”
The Astros will have five middle infielders for four slots at that point. Though Matt Downs has been swinging a pretty hot bat lately, he may be the one that takes the tumble to Oklahoma upon Keppinger’s return. Bill Hall has been turning things around of late, but he’d be the candidate to go based on this year’s statistics alone. Clint Barmes hasn’t been hitting much, but is the Astros best defensive infielder. Angel Sanchez is another possibility to be sent down.