Jose Altuve could return to Astros’ lineup Tuesday

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Astros second baseman Jose Altuve hasn’t played since Friday due to a strained right hamstring, but Brian McTaggart of MLB.com reports that he’s available for tonight’s game against the Rockies and could return to the starting lineup tomorrow afternoon.

Altuve exited Friday’s game against the Mariners after he tweaked his hamstring trying to run out a ground ball in his second at-bat of the first inning against Felix Hernandez. He downplayed the severity of the issue, so a stint on the disabled list wasn’t deemed necessary, but the Astros are trying to play things safe in order to avoid a setback.

After his monster 2014, the 25-year-old Altuve is batting .290/.330/.395 with five home runs, 27 RBI, and 17 steals through 61 games this season.

Giants sign Darin Ruf to minor league contract

Darin Ruf
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The Athletic’s Jayson Stark reports that the Giants have signed 1B/OF Darin Ruf to a minor league contract.

Ruf, 33, played parts of five seasons in the majors with the Phillies from 2012-16, enjoying occasional offensive success. He spent the last three seasons in the KBO League in South Korea with the Samsung Lions, reigniting his career. Ruf hit an aggregate .313/.404/.564 with 86 home runs and 350 RBI over 1,756 plate appearances.

Ruf joins an ever-increasing list of players whose major league careers fizzled out, then found new life overseas — Eric Thames and Miles Mikolas are a couple of examples. Ruf will hope to prove himself as a big leaguer once more in spring training with the Giants.