LEADING OFF: Trout’s strikeout slump, deGrom’s rehab start
A look at what’s happening around the majors on Sunday:
Angels star Mike Trout has struck out in seven straight at-bats during a tough series in Houston.
Trout was 0 for 4 on Saturday after going 0 for 3 on Friday night against the Astros, fanning every time.
“Just losing my posture up there,” he said. “It makes my swing long. Just grinding through some stuff with the lower half. It’ll be all right.”
The three-time AL MVP is having another stellar season, with a .378 on-base average and .632 slugging percentage.
The AL West-leading Astros will try for a sweep when lefty Framber Valdez (8-3, 2.65 ERA) faces Angels left-hander José Suárez (1-2, 4.36).
Mets ace Jacob deGrom is set, at last, to pitch in a competitive game.
Sidelined by injuries since last July, the two-time Cy Young Award winner is scheduled to make a minor league rehab start for Class A St. Lucie against the Jupiter Hammerheads. He’s expected to throw about 25 pitches and two innings.
It will be the first game action since spring training for deGrom, slowed all year because of a stress reaction in his right scapula that caused inflammation.
The announcement Saturday by NL East-leading New York came nearly a year since deGrom’s last major league outing on July 7, 2021. He missed the second half of last season with right forearm tightness and a sprained elbow, then returned in spring training this year and made two Grapefruit League starts.
As he builds up arm strength and stamina, the 34-year-old deGrom will need several minor league rehab outings before he’s ready to rejoin New York’s rotation. So the likelihood is deGrom still won’t be back in the big leagues until at least late July, after the All-Star break.
Fellow ace Max Scherzer (5-1, 2.54 ERA) is scheduled to return from a strained left oblique muscle Tuesday night at Cincinnati. Scherzer, a three-time Cy Young Award winner, got hurt May 18 against St. Louis and recently made two rehab starts for Double-A Binghamton.
NOT RED HOT
The Reds have lost 10 straight home games after falling to Atlanta 4-1 at Great American Ball Park. They dropped a season-high 25 games under .500 at 26-51.
This is Cincinnati’s worst home skid since it lost the first 11 games at Riverfront Stadium in 1986. The Reds ended that drought by beating Atlanta 2-0 as player-manager Pete Rose got two hits.
The Reds have lost four in a row overall.
“There’s plenty of frustration, staff, players, myself,” manager David Bell said. “I know our players are doing everything in their power to try to turn this around. I’m looking long and hard at what I need to do to turn this around.”
Luis Castillo (3-4, 3.32 ERA) starts for the Reds against Charlie Morton (4-3, 4.73 ERA) in the series wrapup.
Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera is one hit away from matching Hall of Famer Craig Biggio for 25th place on the all-time list with 3,060.
Cabrera alos is two RBIs behind Manny Ramirez’s 1,831 for 18th place.
Cabrera can keep moving up the lists when Detroit plays the Royals at Comerica Park.
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