Frank Francisco still out with right elbow injury, could be shut down for rest of season

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From Andy Martino of the New York Daily News comes word that Mets closer Frank Francisco will be “unavailable for at least several more days” and could be shut down for the remainder of the year due to ongoing concerns about his throwing elbow.

Francisco hasn’t made an appearance since last Sunday and hasn’t converted a save since Sept. 1.

An MRI has ruled out major structural damage, but the right-hander is battling lingering inflammation.

Francisco has registered a disappointing 5.53 ERA, 1.61 WHIP and 47/21 K/BB ratio across 42 1/3 innings this season for New York. The 33-year-old is under contract for a salary of $6.5 million in 2013.

Astros extend winning streak to 11 games

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The Astros rallied late to keep their winning streak alive, extending it to 11 games with a 7-4 victory over the Royals on Sunday afternoon. The club is now 48-25, leading the Mariners by a full game in the AL West.

The Royals took a 4-2 lead after three innings, but Brian McCann knocked in a run with a single in the top of the fourth to cut the deficit to one run. Carlos Correa hit a game-tying solo home run in the eighth. The Astros kept their foot on the gas, scoring two more runs on RBI singles from Evan Gattis and Marwin Gonzalez in the top of the eighth and another in the top of the ninth on Correa’s sacrifice fly.

Starter Lance McCullers allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks with nine strikeouts over six innings. Tony Sipp worked a scoreless seventh. Ken Giles did the same in the eighth. Hector Rondon finished off the win in the ninth, working around a one-out walk with a game-ending double play.

After winning all 10 games on their road trip against the Rangers, Athletics, and Royals, the Astros will head home for a nine-game homestand against the Rays, Royals, and Blue Jays. Each club is below .500.