The defending World Series champion Astros suffered a pair of losses Saturday.
First they dropped their second straight game to the Rangers (TEX 7, HOU 3) and their third straight game overall. Then, after Saturday's game, reigning AL MVP Jose Altuve was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a right knee injury, the team announced. It is the first disabled list stint of Altuve's eight-year career.
Here's what Altuve had to say about the injury and his first ever trip to the disabled list, via Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle:
"If they think it's better to go on the DL, for the team and me, in order for me to come back healthy and strong, that's what we'll do," Altuve said after the game.
"It's the first time in my career, I'm not like really happy about it ... It is what it is. I wish I could be helping my team on the field. But I'm going to be traveling with my team everywhere they go and supporting them on the bench."
Altuve has been dealing with the nagging knee issue for almost a week before being placed on the disabled list. He was removed from Wednesday's game after manager A.J. Hinch felt Altuve was favoring the knee.
The Astros are already without shortstop Carlos Correa, who is sidelined with back trouble, so their regular double play combination is currently on the disabled list. Marwin Gonzalez had been playing shortstop during Correa's absence. On Saturday, Alex Bregman slid over to short and Gonzalez played second with J.D. Davis at third.
Even with Friday's loss, the Astros are 67-39 and have a five-game lead in the AL West. They have a bit of a cushion in the division race and, given his importance to the team, it only makes sense to be cautious with Altuve. Better to miss a few games now than a lot of games later.