VIERA, Fla. -- In need of a catcher, the Astros are looking at Jesus Flores as a possible replacement for Jason Castro -- who is out for the season because of a knee injury -- according to a baseball source.
However, Houston is concerned about Flores' right shoulder, which has kept him off the diamond for almost two years. Flores is healthy now, but has yet to be challenged in terms of trying to throw out runners this spring.
For the first time since moving to Washington, the Nats have catching depth and could trade Flores.
th Ivan Rodriguez will start the season as Washington's Opening Day catcher, while Wilson Ramos is considered the team's backstop of the future. Derek Norris most likely will start the season in the Minors. According to many in the Nats' organization, Norris already has a big league bat, but is making strides behind the plate.
Clemens catches up with Jeter
VIERA, Fla. -- Astros prospect Koby Clemens yelled across the diamond Sunday at Derek Jeter, startling the Yankees' captain. The kid that once bounced around the Yankee Stadium clubhouse was now sharing a field with Jeter when the Yankees visited Kissimmee, Fla., on Sunday.
"He said, 'Man, I feel old,'" Clemens said. "But it was good seeing him. He went up there and did his thing and got a couple of walks like it was nothing."
Roger Clemens played with the Yankees from 1999-2003 and again in '07, the last year of his career. Koby Clemens, Roger's oldest son who was drafted by the Astros in 2005, remembers hanging out with Jeter in the Yanks' clubhouse when he was 13 years old.
2010 Spring Training - Washington Nationals
News & Features
- Gio fires four shutout frames in spring finale
- LaRoche, Espinosa go yard in Nats' win
- Rodriguez likely wins Nationals' final bullpen job
- Worth noting
- Detwiler embraces rest before first start of season
Sights & Sounds
Spring Training Info
Johnson, Mills ready for homecoming
VIERA, Fla. -- Astros manager Brad Mills, who spent six years (2004-09) as bench coach of the Boston Red Sox before joining the Astros, will travel with the split squad that plays the Red Sox on Tuesday afternoon in Fort Myers, Fla.
Mills admitted his desire to say hello to some old friends in Fort Myers, but he also wanted to spare bench coach Al Pedrique from making another long bus trip. Pedrique has managed split squads in Tampa, Fla., and Jupiter, Fla. -- both long trips -- earlier this spring.
Astros third baseman Chris Johnson will also make the trip to Fort Myers, which is his hometown. His father, Ron, is a coach for the Red Sox, but Boston plays a split-squad game on Tuesday and Johnson isn't sure if his dad will be there.
"Millsie wants me to go there because he knows [my father is] there, and if he ends up being there, then that will be fun," Johnson said. "It's a long trip, but I'm excited for it."
Pedrique will stay in Kissimmee, Fla., and manage the Astros' other game against the Mets.
Norris leaves with mild hamstring strain
VIERA, Fla. -- Astros right-hander Bud Norris left Monday's game against the Nationals with a mild right hamstring strain, but he told reporters he's not worried about it and categorized more as a "tweak."
Norris felt discomfort in the hamstring while throwing a 2-0 fastball to Rick Ankiel in the seventh, which was Norris' third inning.
"I overextended a little bit and I felt a little tweak in my right hammy," Norris said. "I've never really had that before in my career. I'm not really worried about it. It's just a slight one. [Trainer] Nate [Lucero] did some tests on me and it's going to be fine. We're just going to see how it goes the next couple of days and take care of it."
Norris pitched two-plus innings, allowing two runs and two hits, including a home run to Ryan Zimmerman. He started the fifth and retired six of the first seven batters he faced, including four by strikeout. He gave up a double to Alberto Gonzalez before leaving during the next at-bat against Ankiel.
"I felt good," Norris said. "I've been working on my stuff and my mechanics, and I felt I threw a lot of good two-seamers and some good changeups. I mixed in the slider today, which was good, in that first inning. I just want to get healthy and get back out there."
One of the Astros' charter buses broke down on the way to Viera, Fla., from Kissimmee on Monday morning, forcing the team and staff to squeeze themselves and equipment into one bus for the one-hour, 10-minute drive. ... Jordan Lyles will pitch Wednesday in Port St. Lucie, Fla., against the Mets in a game that will be started by Ryan Rowland-Smith. Lyles was scheduled to start Friday, but he's going to his South Carolina home for a few days for a brother's wedding.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.