Lowrie, Altuve could return to lineup Wednesday

Lowrie, Altuve could return to lineup Wednesday

HOUSTON -- The Astros could have their starting middle infield back together as early as Wednesday. Second baseman Jose Altuve hasn't played since straining an abdominal muscle on Friday, but shortstop Jed Lowrie has been out since July 14 with an injury to his right leg and ankle.

Lowrie returned from his Minor League rehab on Tuesday and could play Wednesday. Altuve was cleared for game action Tuesday, but wasn't in the starting lineup.

"It was a question whether I was going to play again this year, but I worked hard and I'm looking forward to an opportunity to finish out the year," Lowrie said.

Lowrie, acquired from the Red Sox in a trade last winter, was hitting .253 with 14 homers and 36 RBIs through 80 games before getting injured.

"That's a professional bat," Astros interim manager Tony DeFrancesco said. "We've got a lot of young guys, and Lowrie's been here and been around the game for a while, and played the game for a great organization with the Red Sox and knows how to win. When you have a shortstop with 14 homers, hopefully he can help us the next couple of weeks."

Lowrie wants to finish the season healthy, which will give him peace of mind going into the offseason.

"Hopefully, I get the point where I'm playing every day again and I'm contributing like I was before the injury," he said. "I'm here to help and here to produce."