Astros prospect Dustin Kellogg killed in auto accident

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18-year-old Dustin Kellogg, a 34th-round pick of the Astros in the 2011 draft, was killed late Monday in a collision outside Houston, the Texas Department of Public Safety reported.

Kellogg, driving a pickup truck, was killed in his hometown of Conroe when he collided head-on with a Wal-Mart 18-wheeler. The DPS said the freight truck driver was not injured in the crash. Kellogg was pronounced dead at the scene.

“He was a promising young right-hander who made it definitely known he wanted to  go out and pitch for his hometown team,” Astros assistant GM Bobby Heck said Tuesday.

Kellogg was 1-1 with a 4.26 ERA in 6 1/3 innings for the GCL Astros in his pro debut.

“We are deeply saddened by the news of Dustin’s passing,” GM Ed Wade said. “Although he had only been an Astros player for a short time, we share the pain of his family. Our prayers go out to Dustin’s loved ones.”

Nathan Eovaldi to make 2018 debut for Rays soon

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Rays manager Kevin Cash said that pitcher Nathan Eovaldi will join the starting rotation on Monday or Tuesday to face the Athletics, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Eovaldi’s rehab outing with Triple-A Durham went well, even though he gave up eight runs in four innings.

Eovaldi, 28, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2016 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He had arthroscopic surgery in March to remove loose bodies in his elbow. It’s been a long road back. Knowing Eovaldi needed to recover from surgery, the Rays signed him to a one-year, $2 million contract in 2017 that included a $2 million club option for 2018 that they exercised last November.

When Eovaldi last pitched, he ranked among baseball’s hardest throwers, particularly among starters. He averaged 97.1 MPH on his fastball in 2016. Among starters who racked up at least 100 innings that season, only the Mets’ Noah Syndergaard had a higher average velocity (97.9 MPH). It remains to be seen if he still has that velocity after undergoing two procedures on his elbow.

The Rays will be glad to have Eovaldi back. The club has sustained injuries to Jake Faria, Yonny Chirinos, and Jose De Leon.