Astros ace Justin Verlander placed on IL with calf injury

HOUSTON — Houston Astros ace Justin Verlander, a leading candidate for the AL Cy Young Award, has been placed on the injured list with a right calf injury.

The team announced the move and said that an MRI done on the calf revealed fascial disruption, but no muscle fiber disruption.

Verlander’s stint on the injured list is retroactive. He was injured in his start while going to cover first base during a rundown in the third inning against the Orioles.

The right-hander lowered his major league-leading ERA to 1.84 by throwing three scoreless innings before his exit.

The 39-year-old Verlander returned this season after missing almost two seasons following Tommy John surgery. Entering the matchup with the Orioles, he was 8-0 with a 1.35 ERA in his last 10 starts.

Verlander’s 16 wins are tied with Atlanta’s Kyle Wright and Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Tony Gonsolin for most in the majors.

Houston recalled right-hander Brandon Bielak from Triple-A Sugar Land and optioned outfielder Jake Meyers there. The Astros also recalled utility player J.J. Matijevic from Sugar Land and added right-hander Hunter Brown to the taxi squad from Sugar Land.

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