With the announcement today that Bud Norris will miss Sunday's start in Arlington, the Astros are in need of another starter to fill his spot against the Rangers.(Just re-read the Astros' website: Norris is NOT officially out tomorrow, but he is unlikely to start.) The least complicated course of action would be to bring someone up who is on the 40-man roster. Paul Clemens last pitched for Oklahoma City on Tuesday, so his turn to pitch is Sunday; however, Clemens has been less than effective for the RedHawks with an ERA over 6. Aneury Rodriguez has struggled at AAA as well. He pitched out of the bullpen in his last outing on Wednesday.
The Astros' 40-man roster currently stands at 40, so adding a starting pitcher to the 40-man roster would require that a transaction be made to clear space. Moving Sergio Escalona to the 60-day disabled list would be one way to clear that space.
Here's a look at four non-roster pitchers who could be considered(in alphabetical order):
Jose Cisnero, RHP. In his last four starts for the Hooks, Cisnero has posted a 2.16 ERA over 25 IP. He has surrendered 21 hits and struck out 28 batters. His most recent start was on Monday giving him five days' rest before Sunday. NOTE: The Rangers' Saturday starter is scheduled to be a non 40-man roster promotee from AA, Justin Grimm. Update: Cisnero is posted as the Saturday starter on the Hooks' website.
Armando Galarraga, RHP. Galarraga made his most recent start on Monday, so he would be going on five days' rest. In his second start in the Astros' system and first at the AAA level, Galarraga pitched 4 2/3 scoreless innings at New Orleans. Update: Galarraga is posted as the Saturday starter on the RedHawks' website.
Dallas Keuchel, LHP. Keuchel missed his scheduled start on Thursday at Round Rock being replaced by spot starter Sergio Perez. Keuchel has a 4.26 ERA at AAA this season. He hasn't pitched since June 9.
Brett Oberholtzer, LHP. Oberholtzer has a 2.27 ERA over his last five starts for the Hooks. He has allowed 33 hits over 31 2/3 IP in those starts. His most recent start was Tuesday in Corpus, so Sunday would be his normal turn to pitch.
UPDATE: One more non 40-man roster starting pitcher to keep in mind in case Luhnow and Company go outside the box is Wes Musick. Musick started the season at Lancaster. However, he has pitched his way up to AAA with the help of some injuries. In five AAA starts, he has posted a 3.14 ERA. In his most recent start, the left-hander pitched five scoreless innings for Oklahoma City. However, that start was on Wednesday, so pitching again on Sunday in Arlington would give him only three days' rest.