Astros' Gerrit Cole: Plays catch Friday

Cole (hamstring) played catch Friday for the first time since being scratched from Tuesday's start, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports.

Cole said he felt no ill effects following the session and is expected to play catch again this weekend in Oakland. That will be followed by an "extensive" bullpen session when Houston returns home. Getting through that pain-free will clear Cole for a return to the rotation during a four-game set against the Tigers which begins Monday. "Right now, our hope is that he's going to be able to pitch at the back end of that Detroit Tigers series," manager A.J. Hinch said. The Astros will need a fifth starter Thursday.

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