SEATTLE — The Astros are not expecting their five players on the COVID-19 injured list to return during this five-game road trip against the Mariners and Rockies, manager Dusty Baker said on Friday.

“It’s leaning that way, yeah,” Baker said of the quintet missing the entire road trip.

Baker had no concrete updates on José Altuve, Yordan Alvarez, Alex Bregman, Martín Maldonado or Robel García, all of whom went to the injured list on Wednesday due to “health and safety protocols.” None of the five players traveled to Seattle and Baker acknowledged they will not return during the three-game series against the Mariners. No additional players have been added to the COVID IL since Wednesday.

The Astros still have not specified anything about the situation that led to the injured list placement or the short-term status of the five players impacted. General manager James Click did not say whether any player tested positive for COVID-19, but Baker said on Friday that negative test results will dictate when the players can rejoin the team.

“They have to test negative, for sure,” Baker said. “They haven’t given us any indication, really, of when they’ll be back. We’ve been talking to the league, we’ve been pleading with the league. Guys are testing negative but they still have that protocol where you have to sit out x amount of days whether you test negative or not.”

Under Major League Baseball’s health and safety protocols, players or staff members who test positive for COVID-19 face a mandatory 10-day isolation. Close contacts of a positive test must isolate for seven days. Extra scrutiny contacts — individuals who had some contact with a positive individual, but are not determined to be close contacts — may continue working without isolation, but only if they test negative for the virus and are completely asymptomatic.

It’s unclear whether any of the five Astros are “extra scrutiny contacts.”

Baker reiterated on Friday that all five players on the injured list have received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. The Astros have not reached the 85 percent vaccination threshold that would allow a relaxation of health and safety protocols. Baker said “there’s only a few guys who have had both shots,” but at least some other players received the one-shot, Johnson & Johnson vaccine on their own. Pitcher Lance McCullers Jr. said he received it last week.

“We talked to our doctors, we’ve talked to the CDC, we’ve talked to the league, we talked to everybody to try to hopefully make this shorter,” Baker said. “The longer they’re out, the more out of game shape they’re in. You can practice and work out all you want to, but you lose that game shape. The fact that we’re on the road makes it even tougher.”

The unlikelihood of a return on this road trip does offer some stability for the five prospects brought to Houston in a haste on Wednesday. Abraham Toro, Garrett Stubbs, Taylor Jones, Ronnie Dawson and Alex De Goti arrived at Minute Maid Park only an hour prior to first pitch, with few absolutes about the short-term future.

All are now vital for the Astros to snap out of a five-game funk. Jones started at designated hitter on Friday against the Mariners. De Goti made his major league debut, hitting seventh and playing second base in Altuve’s absence. Yuli Gurriel, Michael Brantley and Carlos Correa give Baker the luxury of some stalwarts, but the skipper will mix and match his lineups with this list of young prospects throughout the road trip.

“We just have to go on, find a way to go forward with our young guys,” Baker said. “I asked them to rise to the occasion. You’re in the big leagues so you might as well think that you belong here. We’re expecting good, quality play out of them.”

Without Maldonado, Stubbs may need to spare starter Jason Castro for at least one game on this five-game trip. De Goti, a righthanded hitter, can play both second and third base. The switch-hitting Toro is a better option at third base, where Aledmys Díaz played on Friday against Mariners lefthanded starter Yusei Kikuchi.

Baker may spread designated hitter duties among Toro, Jones and Dawson, depending on matchups. Dawson started on Wednesday against Tigers righty Michael Fulmer and picked up his first major league hit. Jones — the only righthanded hitter of the bunch — started against Kikuchi on Friday.

“(Baker told us) just come out and do our thing,” Jones said. “Enjoy the moment, have fun, stay focused, stay ready. Obviously we don’t know what the situation is going to be like, so we just have to prepare and kind of focus in, lock in on the task at hand.”

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