Valbuena, McCullers, Rasmus on the mend

Valbuena, McCullers, Rasmus on the mend

HOUSTON -- The Astros have had to deal with a lot of injuries as of late, so much so that manager A.J. Hinch characterized his club as the "walking wounded" on Tuesday afternoon while providing updates on his hobbled players.

Infielder Luis Valbuena, who strained his hamstring in late July and is still on the 15-day disabled list, did some light running around the bases on Tuesday afternoon and will join the Astros on the seven-game road trip that starts on Thursday in Baltimore.

"He's working hard," Hinch said. "He's had some good days. He's had very few bad days. It's a slow ramp for us."

Valbuena has the third-highest batting average on the club, at .260, and has 76 hits, 17 doubles, 13 home runs and 40 RBIs on the season.

Lance McCullers won't throw for at least another week after sustaining a mild elbow strain in a 2-1 loss to the Blue Jays on Aug. 2.

McCullers heads to DL

"We've progressed to a few more things in the weight room, in the training room, but he's not throwing," Hinch said. "He won't be throwing this week."

McCullers has the lowest ERA (3.22) and highest strikeout-per-nine ratio (11.78) of any member of the Astros' rotation.

After dealing with a cyst in his right ear for the past few months, outfielder Colby Rasmus had surgery last Wednesday to have it removed.

"Really just been sitting on the couch watching Disney Channel with my youngest," Rasmus said of his recovery. "In the early goings, there was not much I could do. After the first day I woke up, I was pretty hurt. Just struggling. Couldn't really do much."

Rasmus placed on 15-day DL

The cyst was bothering Rasmus, a career .241 hitter, so much that he went 2-for-58 in his last 15 games. The 30-year-old veteran hopes to return in time for the series against the Rangers in early September.

"It's fun, but it's hard," Rasmus said of watching the team play without him. "When they went to Toronto, it was a tough series. I cut it off halfway through because I didn't want to break my remote, so we turned the Disney Channel back on and eased things up a little bit."

Jordan Ray is a reporter for based in Houston. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.