Astros catcher Jason Castro unlikely to return this season

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Astros catcher Jason Castro was supposed to open the 2011 season as the team’s primary backstop, but he suffered a torn meniscus in his right knee early in spring training and has been rehabbing ever since.

That rehab is likely to continue into October.

According to Stephen Goff of the Astros Examiner, the 24-year-old is beginning to make noticeable progress but acknowledged to reporters Saturday that he might be running out of time.

Castro was the 10th overall pick in the 2008 MLB Amateur Draft and climbed his way to the big leagues in 2010. He posted a weak .205/.286/.287 batting line, two home runs and eight RBI in 67 games as a rookie, but the future should be a little brighter.

Castro is fully expecting to be in game shape by the start of spring training next February.

Bryce Harper activated from the disabled list

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The Nationals have activated Bryce Harper from the disabled list.

They were expected to activate Harper yesterday but they didn’t because Harper was suffering from an illness. He’s better today so he should be in the lineup against the Phillies.

Harper has been out since August when he slipped on a wet first base bag and was diagnosed with a bone bruise in his left knee. That interrupted an MVP-caliber season in which he was hitting .326/.419/.614 with 29 home runs, 87 RBI, and 92 runs scored in 472 plate appearances. While the postseason awards are out of his reach, the Nats will be content to get him back up to speed in time for what looks to be a first round playoff matchup against the Chicago Cubs.

Someone stole Trevor Bauer’s drone

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Last year Trevor Bauer‘s playoff availability — and performance — was impacted in a major way by a drone injury. Specifically, Bauer lacerated his pinky on the outside of his right hand while repairing one of the drones he designs, builds and flies.

Now, a little over a week before the Indians begin the defense of their American League pennant, Bauer is embroiled in further drone drama. He tweeted this afternoon that his drone “IronMan” has been stolen. He has implored the public for Iron Man’s safe return so that he need not risk his pinky finger with yet another October drone injury:

I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that the Indians themselves stole the drone so that Bauer does not mess with it anymore until the season is over. They need him too badly.