Astros’ closer announcement will have to wait another day

The announcement Houston Astros fans have been waiting for this offseason will have to wait another day.

Even after spring training, there is uncertainty about who will get the ball in the ninth inning – Luke Gregerson or Ken Giles. Astros manager A.J. Hinch had said he was going to discuss his team’s plan of attack for late-inning sutations during Sunday’s open workout.

However, bad weather canceled that workout Sunday, meaning fans will have to wait until before Monday afternoon’s game for the news.

Giles, the centerpiece of a 5-for-2 trade with the Phillies in December, posted a 6.75 ERA over 9 1/3 innings this spring but has electric stuff. Gregerson, the Astros’ closer last season, only recently resumed pitching in games because of an oblique injury but has pitched well since returning. In Friday’s seventh inning he retired the side in order, recording two strikeouts.

“I’m not playing coy here as much as I am setting the tone,” Hinch said after Friday’s exhibition against the Brewers at Minute Maid Park. “The most important part of the bullpen is closing out the game, and that closing situation might come in the seventh, eighth, ninth. It might be a pitch in the sixth by any number of guys.

“I understand the intrigue, and I understand the curiosity. … I’ve got to leave something for the workout in New York on Sunday.”


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