Astros lose Jed Lowrie, Jason Castro to DL

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Just in time for their rematch against Matt Cain, the Astros put two starters on the disabled list Sunday, Jed Lowrie and Jason Castro.

Lowrie, the Astros’ most productive hitter with 14 homers and 36 RBI this season, suffered a sprained ankle during Saturday’s game. Castro, who has a solid .254/.440/.379 line in 169 at-bats, is dealing with soreness in his surgically repaired right knee.

With both players out, the Astros will turn to Rule 5 pick Marwin Gonzalez at shortstop and veteran Chris Snyder behind the plate.

The Astros are facing Cain today for the first time since the Giants right-hander pitched a perfect game against them on June 13. He struck out 14 that night.

The Angels to lower the right field wall

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The Los Angeles Angels announced today that they will lower the right field wall at Angel Stadium from 18 feet to eight feet.

The stated reason: to make room for a new out-of-town scoreboard and “philosophical changes.” Obviously, though, helping out lefty power hitters is on the agenda too. As it was, Angel Stadium was in the bottom ten of all parks in allowing homers for lefties.

One of their own lefties is Kole Calhoun, who is a pull hitter. Another one could be Shohei Ohtani, who is a lefty hitter. Although, as a righty pitcher, that could harm him against opposing lefty batters. I’m assuming, though, that the Angels ran a bunch of numbers to establish that this move helps them more than it hurts them, or else they wouldn’t be doing it.