Lindstrom shines; other Astros news from early Wednesday
Right-hander Matt Lindstrom was thrilled with easily his best outing of the spring in Tuesday’s win over the Mets. He threw two innings and didn’t allow anyone to reach base while striking out one batter, and manager Brad Mills said the extra work with pitching coach Brad Arnsberg is paying off.
“I thought that was just outstanding,” he said. “He threw six pitches in the first inning and that’s why we wanted to send him out for the second inning to get him some pitches. Arnie is working with him on some things, and the progress he made yesterday was leaps and bounds over his last outing. If we can keep him progressing in right direction, that’s going to build some confidence with him as well.”
Lindstrom has been working with Arnsberg on changing the grip on his slider. The new grip is more tailored to his arm angle so the ball doesn’t pop out of his hands as much. That will allow him to throw the fastball more in the zone.
“I felt like a had a lit better command of my slider and that makes a big difference when I’m throwing it for strikes and using it the way I know,” Lindstrom said. “The new grip with Arnsberg is something I feel comfortable with. It worked out good and you have to continue to build on it and feel more comfortable with it.”
Here are some other tidbits from this camp this morning:
- Right-hander Brandon Lyon is scheduled to throw another 30-pitch side session Wednesday. Lyon, who hasn’t faced a batter this spring after having a cyst on his throwing shoulder drained, could throw live batting practice Friday if all goes well. Stay tuned for updates.
- Catcher Jason Castro was sent home with a case of the stomach flu. He wasn’t scheduled to start on Wednesday, and Mills said he hoped he would be able to make his start Thursday against Washington: “He’s got the stomach thing a couple of guys had in the bullpen the past week,” he said. “We sent him home, and hopefully it’s a one-day thing, which we think it is.” Castro is 6-for-12 this spring.
- Right-handed reliever Alberto Arias, who left Tuesday’s game with a mild strain in his upper back/neck/shoulder area, won’t throw for a couple of days. The plan is for Arias to get checked out Friday when the team doctors come to town. “We’re going to back him off and he’ll see a doctor on Friday and then we’ll go from there,” Mills said. “If it is something that needs to be calmed down, it will have a day to calm down before the doctors get here.”