Mills sets up intrasquad game for Astros

Mills sets up intrasquad game for Astros

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- After not being able to schedule a "B" game to replace the March 11 rainout against the Tigers, the Astros will instead face each other on Tuesday.

Astros manager Brad Mills said the team will hold an intrasquad game at 9 a.m. CT on Tuesday on a back field, with left-handers J.A. Happ and Zach Duke throwing five innings apiece. The Astros are scheduled to play the Cardinals at 12:05 p.m.

Mills will manage both teams in a game that will feature umpires. The teams will have eight-man lineups.

"We're going to run it like a regular game," Mills said. "I want Dave Clark and Bobby Meacham to be first- and third-base coaches on both sides, and I want to give them signs, I want them to get signs from me and I want to give signs to the catchers. I want this to be a game-type situation for the pitchers and allow the hitters to get some at-bats."

The Astros, among other things, are still trying to sort through outfielders J.B. Shuck, Fernando Martinez, Jack Cust, Justin Ruggiano and Travis Buck for a backup role, as well as trying to get innings for fifth-starter candidates Kyle Weiland, Jordan Lyles and Duke.

"This is a little bit different than sending guys to a Minor League game or sending them to a simulated game," Mills said. "This is a step beyond that and will ramp up the intensity for everyone -- pitchers, position players and everyone else."