• Brian L. Barefield

Astros get a big pop back in their lineup with the return of 2019 A.L. ROY Yordan Alvarez.

Photo Credit/ Houston Astros

Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker finally caught a huge break on Friday. With his team currently under .500 at 8-10, a record some could attribute to the rash of injuries they have suffered through in the first part of a shortened season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Baker is getting a big bat back in the Astros lineup that will add more firepower to an already explosive offense.

Reigning 2019 American League Rookie of The Year, Yordan Alvarez made his way to Minute Maid Park on Thursday just in time to play in the upcoming three-game series against the Seattle Mariners.

Alvarez, 23, had been on the injured list for the Astros since the restart of the 2020 Spring Training practices that had been cancelled due to coronavirus. Many media members suspected that Alvarez had contracted the disease, but the Astros organization was bound by MLB rules not to discuss any players that could have possible been infected.

All doubt was put to rest when Alvarez spoke to the media for the first time on Friday.

“It has been a very difficult month for me,” said Alvarez. “I know the team didn’t want to say anything, but I tested positive for coronavirus. I had some headaches and stuff like that but thank God I am feeling a lot better and I am able to get ramped up and felling really good here back with the team.”

According to Baker, the powerful left-hander will be in the batting order as the designated hitter for at least two out of the three games against the Mariners due to knee issues that have hindered him this off-season as well.

“He walked into the clubhouse and everyone was happy,” said Baker about Alvarez rejoining the team. “Yordan will play DH today (Friday) and tomorrow (Saturday), but he didn’t play two days in a row down in Corpus, so we have to watch the soreness in his legs.”

Alvarez took the baseball world by storm on last year putting the rest of the league on notice that he belonged in the big leagues batting .313 with 27 homeruns in just 87 games played.

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