Astros Player of the Day: José Urquidy

Feb 26, 2023; West Palm Beach, Florida, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Jose Urquidy (65) pitches in the first inning against the Washington Nationals at The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches. Mandatory Credit: Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

Astros Player of the Day: José Urquidy

Welcome to the Gallery Sports’ Houston Astros Spring Training player spotlight: Astros Player of the Day. We will look at a different Astros player each day throughout the spring.

Today’s Astros Player of the Day is starting pitcher José Urquidy.

Urquidy, a 27-year-old out of Mexico, was an international signing in 2015. He remained in Single-A, making starts and acclimating to Houston’s minor-league system, until 2019. That year, he was invited to Spring Training and must have impressed as he progressed through Double-A and Triple-A that season before making his MLB debut on July 2, making a start where he lasted 3.2 innings while allowing two runs on 81 pitches.

He made five starts that July, ultimately not producing the level of success he or the Astros would have hoped for with a 5.87 ERA, allowing 15 runs over 23 innings. He was sent back down to Triple-A but returned to the big-league club in September, where he would have much better results, allowing just three runs over 18 innings.

His work down the stretch earned a spot on Houston’s postseason roster, coming out of the bullpen in the ALDS and ALCS before making a start in Game 4 of the 2019 World Series, a career highlight where he tossed five scoreless innings and earned a win as the Astros would go on to claim an 8-1 victory in that game before ultimately falling to the Nationals that series.

He had an injury-shortened 2020 on top of the already trimmed schedule due to COVID, making just five regular-season starts though he posted a 2.73 ERA before watching that go up to 4.76 in the postseason, where Houston fell in the ALCS to the Rays.

He had a good year in 2021, making twenty starts, going 8-3 with a 3.63 ERA and 0.99 WHIP, then last season made 28 starts, notching a 13-8 mark with a 3.94 ERA and 1.17 WHIP over 164.1 innings of work. With Justin Verlander’s departure and Lance McCullers Jr.’s injury situation, Urquidy is a lock to be in Houston’s rotation in 2023 and will look to continue to improve the numbers of his early career.

Urquidy has made two starts so far this spring, a two-inning one-run outing against the Nationals on Feb. 26 and a two-inning, three-run (one unearned) outing against the Braves March 3. He will leave Spring Training to take part in the World Baseball Classic for his native team of Mexico.

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