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Dexter Fowler sent home “indefinitely” with gastroenteritis

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From beat writer Evan Drellich at the Houston Chronicle:

The Astros center fielder was hospitalized for Friday night before he was released Saturday because of gastroenteritis. The plan was to have him report to Minute Maid Park on Sunday, even if he couldn’t play right away.

Fowler instead will remain at home indefinitely, and it’s unclear if he will be on the trip to Toronto, where the Astros start a three-game series with the Blue Jays on Tuesday.

Gastroenteritis is a stomach infection that carries flu-like symptoms. It’s not serious, but the Astros want to be careful.

“He’s at home resting, and the doctor wanted him to continue to rest,” manager Bo Porter told the Houston media before Sunday afternoon’s game against the Angels. “I’m not going to speak to (whether Fowler goes to Toronto). You don’t know — when you start talking about … a virus running through your body, that takes time. We don’t know how much longer it’s going to be, we just know that the doctors are treating him.”

Fowler was off to a scorching start for his new team, boasting four extra-base hits in three games.

Report: Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on Sonny Gray

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 06: Sonny Gray #54 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning at the Oakland Coliseum on August 6, 2016 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Jason O. Watson/Getty Images
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The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.

Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.

Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.

President Obama Welcomes the Cubs to the White House

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As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.

Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.

Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.