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Fowler expected to rejoin lineup soon

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HOUSTON -- When the Astros leave Wednesday for a 10-game road trip to the East Coast, they expect to have veteran outfielder Dexter Fowler in tow.

Fowler, who's been on the disabled list since June 27 with a right intercostal strain, was scheduled to play in his fourth rehab game at Triple-A Oklahoma City on Monday and hasn't had any setbacks. He went 3-for-8 in his first three games, which included two games at designated hitter.

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"Chances are good," Astros manager Bo Porter said when asked if Fowler would be activated before Thursday's series opener in Boston. "We should be getting him back soon."

The return of Fowler will be a big boost to the Astros, who have been without him, George Springer and Alex Presley -- all three of whom had been starting -- for much of the last month.

"Whenever you lose starters, that's difficult," Porter said. "At the same time, it provides opportunity for some other guys to play during that time. We would definitely be excited to get Dexter and Springer back, and Presley at the time he went down with the injury, he was a starter. Getting all three of those guys would be huge at the back end of the season."

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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