6/30/2014 9:26 P.M. ET
Fowler remains day to day with back strain
By Brian McTaggart and Mike Vernon / MLB.com
HOUSTON -- Dexter Fowler was out of the lineup with a stiff back Monday for the fourth straight game. Astros manager Bo Porter said Monday was the first day Fowler had been able to move around the field during batting practice and swing.
"Any time you start talking about back, it's just tricky," Porter said. "You're talking about being able to swing and field and throw, and you just want to be careful."
Porter said he told Fowler to take it slow, as it was better to miss four to five days than 15.
Fowler said he was one the bike Monday and that he had been progressing.
"I feel all right," Fowler said. "We'll just evaluate it day by day."
Fowler is batting .270 with six homers and 24 RBIs, and he had been the Astros' leadoff hitter in 33 of his 76 games. Jose Altuve has replaced him in the leadoff role.
Alex Presley has played for Fowler in center field through the four games. Porter said he did not expect that to change and that he had not considered moving George Springer back to center field, where he played in the Minor Leagues, because of the brevity of Fowler's absence.
"This is something that's not going to be an extended period of time," Porter said. "Presley has done a tremendous job in center field, and I'd rather keep George where he's at knowing that's where he's going to play the majority of the time."
Bass could join Astros on road vs. Angels
HOUSTON -- Astros veteran reliever Anthony Bass is expected to join the team in time for its trip to Anaheim and Arlington, which begins Thursday.
Bass, who has been on the disabled list since May 11 with a right intercostal strain, threw two innings in a Minor League rehab outing Sunday for Class A Quad Cities. He allowed two hits and two runs, but it was an important step in his recovery in that he could throw two innings.
"He had a good outing, and right now we feel like he's probably very close," Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow said. "He's going to be down for a few days after pitching [Sunday] night. We'll probably make a decision either later today or [Tuesday] about exactly what to do with Bass, but we're encouraged by what we saw yesterday."
Bass had appeared in 15 games for the Astros this year, going 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA in 18 innings. He allowed 17 hits and nine earned runs with five walks.
Feliz added to Futures Game World Team
HOUSTON -- The Astros' No. 9 prospect, Michael Feliz, a right-hander with one of the hardest-throwing arms in the system, was added to the World Team roster Monday for the All-Star Futures Game as an injury replacement. Feliz is 3-2 with a 3.64 ERA in 14 games, including 10 starts, at Class A Quad Cities.
"I think it's well-deserved," general manager Jeff Luhnow said. "Feliz last year really came on the radar for us and is one of those exciting guys that has an electric arm and performed well last year and is continuing to perform well this year, and I think he'll represent the World Team very well."
The Astros are one of 20 teams to have two prospects selected to the game, which will be played Sunday, July 13, at Target Field in Minneapolis. Triple-A outfielder Domingo Santana will also represent the World Team. Carlos Correa, the club's No. 1 prospect, was selected to represent the World Team but is out for the season with a broken fibula.
Feliz, 21, was originally signed by the A's as a 16-year-old in 2010, but his contract was voided when he tested positive for steroids. The Dominican native ultimately landed with the Astros and, after sitting out a 50-game suspension, showed his vast potential on the mound.
Keuchel expected to make next turn in rotation
HOUSTON -- Dallas Keuchel was expected to be back in the Astros' rotation later this week pending the results of a throwing session on Monday.
Keuchel was scratched from his previous start, on Saturday against the Tigers, because of left wrist inflammation and was replaced with Brett Oberholtzer. On Monday, Keuchel said he was able to take off a soft cast that he had been wearing and that all signs suggested he would make his next scheduled start.
"Barring any setback he should be ready to go Thursday or Friday," manager Bo Porter said. "We'll let him throw today, and hopefully we don't have any issues and we're ready to plug him back in the rotation."
Keuchel had been 8-5 in 15 starts for the Astros with a 2.78 ERA.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. Mike Vernon is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.