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Team Report - HOUSTON ASTROS

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INSIDE PITCH

HOUSTON -- Jon Singleton offered another flash of potential Wednesday. Now he needs to find a way to sustain some success.

The Houston rookie first baseman hit a two-run, opposite-field home run off Oakland Athletics right-hander Jason Hammel in the fifth inning of the Astros' 8-1 win.

The hit was the only one Singleton recorded in the series, as he went 1-for-9 with two RBIs and three runs. Singleton has struggled mightily since his promotion from Triple-A Oklahoma City on June 3, batting .174 with a .270 on-base percentage, a .355 slugging percentage and a whopping 70 strikeouts in 196 plate appearances. When asked what he has said to Singleton through the course of his woes, Astros manager Bo Porter offered a pointed quip.

"Welcome to the big leagues," Porter said. "These are the growing pains of a young player learning the lessons that he needs to learn at the major league level."

If there is a bit of promise tied to Singleton, it comes by way of his power (his eight homers are the most by an Astros rookie since Jeff Bagwell clubbed 14 in 1991) and his patience. Singleton leads all American League rookies with 22 walks, including three against Oakland. He walked in his first plate appearance Wednesday. In the series finale against the Marlins on Sunday, he walked twice before smacking another opposite-field homer to left, this one off Miami closer Steve Cishek.

"That there is a true indication that he's starting to see the ball better," Porter said of the walks. "A lot of his strikeouts are balls out of the strike zone, and when he gets to the point where he's seeing the ball well, he's taking those pitches and he's either walking or he's buying himself a better pitch to hit."

NOTES, QUOTES

RECORD: 44-64

STREAK: Won one

NEXT: Blue Jays (RHP Drew Hutchison, 7-9, 4.44 ERA) at Astros (RHP Jarred Cosart, 9-7, 4.41 ERA)

PLAYER NOTES:

--RHP Josh Zeid will undergo season-ending surgery on his right foot Aug. 6. Zeid was placed on the 15-day disabled list last week with left foot bilateral sesamoiditis but will undergo a sesamoidectomy on his right foot first. Zeid will undergo the same procedure on his left foot six weeks after his initial surgery, and he is expected to be sidelined a minimum of three months.

--LF Chris Carter was a late scratch Wednesday due to illness. RF Marc Krauss shifted to replace Carter defensively while Robbie Grossman was added to the lineup and replaced Krauss in right field. In July, Carter leads the American League in slugging percentage (.679), is tied for first with eight home runs, and is third in OPS (1.043) and RBIs (19).

--LHP Dallas Keuchel recorded his fourth complete game of the season, which leads the American League and is tied with Dodgers LHP Clayton Kershaw for the major league lead. The last Houston pitcher with four complete games in a season was RHP Roy Oswalt in 2005; the last Astros left-hander to accomplish the feat was Randy Johnson, who did so in only 11 starts in 1998 after joining the club in a trade with the Seattle Mariners.

--1B Jon Singleton clubbed his eighth homer this season in the fifth inning, the most homers by an Astros rookie since 1B Jeff Bagwell hit 14 in 1991. Singleton also drew a walk in the first inning, giving him five in his last four games and 22 since making his debut June 3. That latter total leads all American League rookies.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "They've pretty much owned us the last couple of years, so it feels pretty good. They got some guys hurt, and they're not going to make any excuses over there because they're a good team and they figure out ways to win just like last night. We can't take anything for granted, and I just wanted to close the door. It's just another start. I try to go the distance every start, and I just got fortunate enough to get some other contact and looked up and it was the eighth inning." -- LHP Dallas Keuchel, after going the distance to beat the Oakland A's 8-1 Wednesday.

ROSTER REPORT

MEDICAL WATCH:

--LF Chris Carter (illness) did not play July 30.

--RHP Josh Zeid (left foot bilateral sesamoiditis) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to July 25. He will undergo season-ending surgery on his right foot Aug. 6, then will undergo the same procedure on his left foot in late September.

--CF George Springer (strained left quadriceps) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to July 20. The injury was not believed to be serious. He took pregame batting practice July 29.

--CF Dexter Fowler (right intercostal strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 27.

--CF Alex Presley (strained right oblique muscle) went on the 15-day disabled list July 8.

--RHP Jose Cisnero (right elbow discomfort) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to May 7, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 21. He underwent season-ending Tommy John surgery May 28.

--RHP Jesse Crain (right biceps surgery in October 2013) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 21, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on May 2. He was shut down as of April 25 due to bursitis. He was throwing off flat ground as of May 6. He threw a bullpen session May 22.

--RHP Matt Albers (right shoulder stiffness) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 22, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on July 25. Albers threw a short bullpen session on May 4. He threw a 25-pitch bullpen session May 6. Albers was unable to throw a simulated game as scheduled May 9, and he was shut down as of May 12. He remained in Houston when the Astros went on the road May 19. He was rehabbing in Florida as of May 29.

ROTATION:

RHP Scott Feldman

RHP Jarred Cosart

LHP Dallas Keuchel

RHP Collin McHugh

LHP Brett Oberholtzer

BULLPEN:

RHP Chad Qualls (closer)

LHP Darin Downs

LHP Tony Sipp

RHP Jose Veras

RHP Josh Fields

RHP Jake Buchanan

RHP Paul Clemens

CATCHERS:

Jason Castro

Carlos Corporan

INFIELDERS:

1B Jon Singleton

2B Jose Altuve

SS Marwin Gonzalez

3B Matt Dominguez

DH Chris Carter

INF Jesus Guzman

INF Gregorio Petit

OUTFIELDERS:

LF Marc Krauss

CF Enrique Hernandez

RF Robbie Grossman

OF L.J. Hoes

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