With a threat of significant rain in the forecast tonight for West Palm Beach, FL where the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals are set to play one another in their shared spring home, the Astros decided to make sure that their scheduled pitchers got their work in by having them throw in a minor league game on the back fields of the FITTEAM Ballpark of the Palm Beaches complex, according to a report on Twitter this afternoon by Houston Chronicle writer Chandler Rome.
Josiah Gray is scheduled to start for the Nationals if they play tonight, in a game that will be available on your computer/mobile devices via the Astros’ feed on MLB.tv or MLB At Bat’s audio.
Gray gave up three home runs and four runs total in his first inning of work in a 1 2⁄3-inning appearance against the New York Mets this past Saturday, but retired the final three batters he faced and tried to take the positives out of the appearance.
“You come out of that saying you finished strong,” Gray said, as quoted by MASN’s Mark Zuckerman after that game.
“Obviously, the first inning didn’t go the way I wanted. Leadoff homer, things like that. But you take the positives from the second inning and go from there.”
His manager, Davey Martinez, said there were some mechanical things that they wanted Gray to clean up going forward, but the 24-year-old said he did some things he was happy with in the brief appearance.
“Yeah, there’s definitely positives you bring out,” he said. “I’m not sure if this right or not, but I think I fell behind two batters out of the nine I faced. You can look at that as a positive.”
He’ll try to build on that tonight, weather permitting, when the Nationals and Astros meet in Grapefruit League action at 6:05 PM ET.