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Brad Peacock replaces Mike Fiers in Astros' rotation for Twins series

Brad Peacock parlayed his dominant spot start into another turn in the Astros' rotation Daniel Descalso Jersey, which will send beleaguered No. 5 starter Mike Fiers to the bullpen.Peacock will start Monday afternoon's series opener against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field, Astros manager A.J. Hinch said on Saturday. Charlie Morton will start Tuesday on an extra day's rest and Joe Musgrove will start on normal rest Wednesday. Fiers, who last started Thursday, is expected to be available out of the bullpen beginning Monday.Hinch informed both pitchers of the decision Saturday."I don't want to rush to judgment and say that it's a long term change," Hinch said. "As I told Fiers today, it's not necessarily for longer than the Twins series. We'll make a determination as we go. But that's the way we're going to go with it." Peacock has an impressive 0.87 ERA and 13.1 strikeouts per nine in 20 2 3 innings this season. The decision to insert him into the rotation came just five days after he held the Detroit Tigers to just one hit over 4 1 3 scoreless innings when starting in place of Dallas Keuchel, who missed a turn because of a pinched nerve in his neck. Peacock has a starter's background, but it's uncertain whether his success in shorter spurts out of the bullpen is sustainable longterm when stretched out. If he struggles against the Twins, the Astros will have the option of again adjusting their rotation around Thursday's off day ahead of their series next weekend against the Texas Rangers.The Astros are in line to have their top two starters, Keuchel and Lance McCullers Jr., start next Friday and Saturday against the Rangers in Arlington. They could then pitch either Peacock on five days' rest in the finale of that series or go with Morton on regular rest. Fiers will on Monday assume the long relief spot Peacock had occupied. As a starter, Fiers allowed a major league-worst 18 home runs in just 46 2 3 innings, an astronomical rate of 3.47 homers per nine innings.Musgrove had actually pitched worse than Fiers through nine starts but preserved his spot Friday with a bounce-back performance of seven scoreless innings against the Baltimore Orioles"I've just got to do what the team needs and right now that's me going to the bullpen," Fiers said on Saturday. "I've got to work on some things and get back to where I used to be. Maybe they feel like Peacock gives us a better chance. He's been throwing the ball well, so got to ride the hot hand."After bouncing around between Class AAA and the majors in recent seasons, Peacock attributes his success this year to a healthy offseason and a refined slider. After ditching his harder slider in the 85-86 mph range for more of a sweeping 79-to-81 mph version last July, he's able to throw his breaking ball for strikes when behind in counts.His command in general is much improved. He's also mixing in a two-seam fastball he began tinkering with during spring training."Peacock's pitched well enough to deserve another start Shelby Miller Jersey," Hinch said, "and we get another look at him against a good team."Odds endsJose Altuve batted second for just the second time this season Saturday as Astros manager A.J. Hinch loaded his lineup with righties against Orioles lefthander Wade Miley. Catcher Brian McCann, who batted sixth, was the only lefty in the lineup.Carlos Beltran's 426th career home run Friday night moved him into a tie with Billy Williams for 50th place all-time. His next will tie him with Mike Piazza for 49th place.No current Astros have faced Orioles righthander Alec Asher, who starts against them Sunday, since Asher debuted in the majors in 2015. Asher, 25, is a former Texas Rangers farmhand.
  • Created: Apr 25 '18
  • Admin: Marc


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