Astros lefty and reigning AL Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel hasn’t made a start since Aug. 27 because of shoulder inflammation. Just days ago, Keuchel was shut down completely, and on Friday he underwent an MRI on his ailing wing.

The good news is that the MRI results showed no structural damage to Keuchel’s shoulder. The less-than-ideal news is that the Astros don’t know when Keuchel will be able to take the mound again. On that point …

Keuchel this season has pitched to a 4.55 ERA (87 ERA+) and 3.0 K/BB ratio in 168 innings. Those overall numbers are obviously well shy of what he gave Houston in 2015, but Keuchel’s been much improved in seven starts since the All-Star break: 3.94 ERA, 3.64 K/BB, 6.9 innings per start. As well, the Astros also have Lance McCullers on the disabled list with a sprained elbow, so they’re not exactly deep in the rotation right now.

Starting Friday, the Astros play nine straight against the Cubs, Rangers, and Mariners, so it’s a critical stretch for the club that’s right now 2 1/2 games out of playoff position.

Source: CBS Sports / Astros get good news on Keuchel but don’t know when he’ll pitch again