video thumbnail

MIA@HOU: McHugh strikes out nine over 6 1/3 innings

Right-hander Collin McHugh will look to snap a string of six straight losses when the Astros host the Blue Jays on Friday night in the second game of a four-game series.

McHugh's overall numbers aren't as bad as his record would suggest. He is still among the American League leaders in both opponents' batting average (.202) and strikeouts (102 in 88 2/3 innings), but the Astros have put up only eight runs over his losing streak. He went 6 1/3 innings and allowed four earned runs on seven hits with nine strikeouts in a loss to the Marlins on Sunday.

"We have one job as starters: We go out, and for however many pitches we get -- whether it's 95, 105, 120 -- you go out and you get outs," said the 27-year-old McHugh, who is 2-7 with a 3.43 ERA over his past 10 starts. "The offense, their job is to do their thing and get on base and score runs, and if everybody does their job, we win.

"If one of the parts of the game struggles, like we did early [against Miami], sometimes it doesn't go your way. The talent is there. We're fighting hard and we will hit ourselves out of it. It's the way baseball goes in the dog days of summer."

The Blue Jays will send to the mound left-hander J.A. Happ, who is 2-0 in two career starts against the Astros and 4-3 with a 4.58 ERA in his last 10 games. Happ took a no-decision his last time out after allowing three runs on four hits over 5 1/3 innings vs. the Yankees. The big blows for New York came in the fifth, when Chase Headley and Francisco Cervelli hit back-to-back homers.

Blue Jays: Johnson goes to disabled list with strained hammy
First baseman Dan Johnson was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring on Thursday afternoon.

He sustained the injury while running to first during the ninth inning of Wednesday night's 6-1 victory over the Red Sox.

Right-hander Chad Jenkins was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo to fill Johnson's spot on the roster. Toronto had been carrying six relievers since left-hander Rob Rasmussen was optioned to Buffalo on Tuesday.

Jenkins, 26, appeared in 15 games and has a 3.72 ERA and 10 strikeouts over 19 1/3 innings. He likely will split long-relief duties with fellow righty Todd Redmond and also could make some spot appearances in middle relief.

Astros: Marisnick set for Houston debut
Friday's game will mark the Astros debut for 23-year-old outfielder Jake Marisnick, who was acquired in a six-player trade with the Marlins on Thursday. Marisnick is scheduled to start in center field, where he'll play until either George Springer or Dexter Fowler returns from the 15-day DL, at which time he'll probably move to a corner spot.

Marisnick will be ready to play wherever he's penciled in.

"It doesn't matter," Marisnick said. "Anywhere on the field, anywhere in the lineup is great. I'll play wherever. As a young guy, getting out there and being able to play in the Major Leagues against that competition is huge for development and competing and just being able to see that level."

Marisnick is hitting .167 in 14 games this season. The Marlins optioned him to Triple-A New Orleans on Tuesday, but will be back in a big league lineup on Friday.

Manager Bo Porter said that Marisnick will be able to plug a hole in what is a depleted outfield.

"When you look at the woes we had in the outfield, that's something I had to talk to [general manager] Jeff [Luhnow] about. With the number of games in which Dexter and [Alex] Presley and now Springer have missed, it's something we sought out," Porter said. "A guy who's big league ready [whom] can plug right into the lineup was something we were after."

Worth noting
• Reliever Esmil Rogers was claimed off waivers by the Yankees on Thursday afternoon after being designated for assignment by the Blue Jays on Sunday. Rogers was promoted from Triple-A Buffalo last week but didn't make an appearance during his second go-around in the big leagues this season.

• Luhnow said on Thursday that he's hopeful the team will be able to get at least one of its injured outfielders -- Fowler, Springer or Presley -- out on a rehab assignment next week. Comments