6/13/2014 8:25 P.M. ET
Six draftees sign deals with Astros, head to Tri-City
By Richard Dean / Special to MLB.com
HOUSTON -- The Astros signed six more of their 2014 Draft selections on Friday, with all being assigned to Class A short-season Tri-City, which begins its season Friday.
Joining the ValleyCats are RHP Derick Velazquez (7th round), LHP Bryan Radziewski (9th round), RHP Jay Gause (10th round), catcher Jamie Ritchie (13th round), infielder Nick Tanielu (14th round) and infielder Alex Hernandez (40th round).
The Astros have signed 14 of their 40 selections.
Last year, Tri-City won the New York-Penn League Championship after finishing the regular season with their second consecutive division title.
Altuve sits out, but hand feels '100 percent better'
HOUSTON -- As expected, second baseman Jose Altuve was out of the Astros' lineup on Friday, a night after being hit in the hand by a pitch in the seventh inning from Arizona's Randall Delgado.
X-rays taken after the game were negative and Altuve is listed as day to day.
"It really hurt last night, but today it's 100 percent better," said Altuve, who fielded ground balls with some light toss from the infield during Friday's batting practice. "It feels way better than yesterday.
"I'll come back tomorrow and try to play. Hopefully I can be 100 percent tomorrow."
Marwin Gonzalez replaced Altuve in the lineup against the Rays, playing second base and batting eighth in the order.
Altuve, who leads the Major Leagues in hits with 90 and the American League with 24 steals, has been putting ice on his right hand, and has been gripping a small ball to keep the hand flexible. On Friday the swelling had gone down and he was easily moving his fingers.
"It's good news considering the way it looked when it first happened," said Astros manager Bo Porter.
Altuve, a player who doesn't like to be out of the lineup, will campaign to return to the lineup on Saturday.
"If you ask Altuve, he'll try to play today," said Porter. "He's a resilient guy, tough, so I'm not putting that past him. We'll see how the treatment goes. When your best player has that kind of attitude, wants to go every day, it's contagious for the rest of the guys.
"We appreciate that from a staff standpoint, but at the same time we're not going to put him at risk of not being able to perform at the best of his ability. It's appreciated that he's going to do everything that he can to be out here every day."
Astros give Zeid third callup of year, option Owens
HOUSTON -- Right-handed reliever Josh Zeid was recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City on Friday, with left-hander Rudy Owens optioned to Oklahoma City.
It's the third time this season Zeid has been promoted to the Astros.
"You'd love to stay in one place for the whole year, but I would rather go between Triple-A and the big leagues than stay in Triple-A all year, and maybe go to Double-A," said Zeid. "I'd rather have this struggle than any other struggle. I'll give it all I have and hopefully I can stick.
"I feel at home here. Obviously I know all the guys on the team. I love to play here, I love the fans."
Zeid has seven appearances with the Astros this season with a 3.86 ERA. His last appearance was May 19 at the Angels, allowing no runs in one-third of an inning. In 17 games at Oklahoma City, he's 2-2 with seven saves and a 2.41 ERA in 18 2/3 innings.
"Zeid gives us the flexibility of having a guy who can go short or long coming out of the bullpen," said Astros manager Bo Porter.
Owens made one appearance for the Astros, a May 23 start against the Mariners in which he allowed five runs on nine hits over 5 2/3 innings.
• Prior to Friday's game vs. the Rays, right fielder George Springer received his American League Rookie of the Month for May award and left-hander Dallas Keuchel received his league AL Player of the Week award from May 19-25.
• Chris Carter's home run on Thursday was his third in his last two games and seventh in his last 14 games. Carter was in Friday's lineup as the designated hitter.
• Since April 18, center fielder Dexter Fowler leads the AL with a .435 on-base percentage.
Richard Dean is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.