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 Braves and Marlins have some bad blood, especially concerning Ronald Acuña Jr. Around this time last year, José Ureña intentionally threw at Acuña in the first at-bat of a game, leading to a benches-clearing incident. Acuña was hit on the elbow and exited the game but was ultimately fine. Acuña’s crime? Just being good at baseball. At the time, he had homered in five consecutive games, including three games against the Marlins.
In 2019, the first-place Braves and last-place Marlins have mostly minded their own business. The Marlins, however, can certainly keep a grudge it appears. With his first pitch in the bottom of the first inning Tuesday night in Atlanta, Marlins starter Elieser Hernández hit Acuña in the hip.
Home plate umpire Alan Porter issued warnings to both dugouts. Braves manager Brian Snitker wasn’t happy about his side having received a warning for no reason, and was ejected by first base umpire Mark Wegner. Hernández would hit Adeiny Hechavarría with a pitch in the fourth inning — seemingly unintentionally — and was not ejected. Other than that, there were no more incidents and cooler heads prevailed.
Acuña finished 1-for-4 in the Braves’ 5-1 win. Freddie Freeman hit two home runs and knocked in four runs.