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Thread: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

      
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    Default Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Pirates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL
    By Jenifer Langosch / MLB.com | 05/07/11 10:27 PM ET
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    printe-mailMcCutchen throwing zeros in Bucs' bullpen
    Doumit working on versatility in outfield
    Hurdle explains why he had McCutchen bunt
    Pirates have options to fill their rotation
    Bucs bits
    PITTSBURGH -- A decision about whether or not Pedro Alvarez is going to need to be placed on the disabled list should be made in the next couple of days, manager Clint Hurdle said on Saturday.

    Alvarez came out of Tuesday's game with a right quadriceps strain and has not returned to the field since. The injury is not preventing Alvarez from swinging a bat, but it does continue to impede his first-step movements -- both coming out of the batter's box and on defense.

    Alvarez was set to test out his leg prior to Saturday's game with the hope that he might be available in a limited role on Sunday.

    D. McCutchen's scoreless relief00:01:064/28/11: Daniel McCutchen pitches 2 1/3 scoreless innings of reliefTags: highlight reel, More From This Game, Daniel McCutchen, Pittsburgh Pirates, pitchingShare:
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    Alvarez gets two
    Doumit's grand slam
    Alvarez's diving stopThe Pirates are still hoping to avoid a DL stint for Alvarez, since that would force him to stay out of action until at least May 19. However, the club can only afford to play without Alvarez for so long before it really begins to impact Hurdle's ability to manage with a four-man bench.

    "He's trying to do everything he can to get back," said Hurdle, whose team began a stretch of 17 games in 17 days on Friday. "Once it gets to [missing] six days, for me, they need to come off or they need to go on. That's a long time to play [short-handed]. We're getting closer to that time to decide."

    McCutchen throwing zeros in Bucs' bullpen
    PITTSBURGH -- Brought up to fill the role of long reliever, Daniel McCutchen has quickly given his manager every reason to have the confidence to call on him in just about any situation.

    Sent out from big league camp with a week remaining in March, McCutchen was summoned from Triple-A when Jeff Karstens had to move into the rotation for Ross Ohlendorf. Since then, McCutchen has made 10 appearances. All have been scoreless.

    "I did not see what I'm seeing now in Spring Training out of Daniel McCutchen," manager Clint Hurdle said. "I didn't see it. I heard the talk about him being in the rotation last year, and he's capable of doing this. I did see a kid that had a very good attitude on the mound as far as having a bulldog mentality. But his ability to locate his fastball since he's been here, throw that split, and mix in his other pitches, he's given up zero."

    Despite being the predetermined long guy in the bullpen, McCutchen hasn't been needed to make too many lengthy appearances. He's tossed two innings in relief just three times, and was actually used in the eighth inning of the Pirates' win over San Diego on Wednesday.

    "I'm ready to pitch every day," McCutchen said. "Whether they need me to get an out or throw four innings, I know my body can do either one of those. Just throw me out there in a situation."

    What's been the key for McCutchen's strong start? The right-hander, Hurdle and pitching coach Ray Searage all cited the same thing -- consistent work.

    "In Spring Training, he really wasn't getting that steady work," Searage said. "He really didn't get that much steady work until he got here. Usually, if you get multiple innings under your belt, it helps you to get a better feel for your body. What he's putting himself into is being the jack of all trades."

    Doumit working on versatility in outfield
    PITTSBURGH -- Unable to spend time in the outfield during Spring Training, Ryan Doumit has resumed defensive work in right field over the past two days.

    Getting comfortable in the outfield is a plan the Pirates have had all along. But with injuries to both Doumit and catcher Chris Snyder this spring, attempts to improve Doumit's versatility went on the backburner. That's the case no more.

    Listening to Hurdle explain the decision to have Doumit pull out his outfield glove again, it did not sound as if the Pirates are preparing Doumit to make many outfield starts. Rather, this will help the team's backup catcher be better prepared in case a double-switch or late-inning situation calls for him to need to remain in the game as an outfielder.

    The outfield is not completely new territory for Doumit, who has appeared in 60 career games in right field. He made 17 starts at the position last season.

    Hurdle explains why he had McCutchen bunt
    PITTSBURGH -- Following the Pirates' 3-2 loss to the Astros on Friday night, the questions swirled on sports talk radio and other fan forums. Why did manager Clint Hurdle choose to have Andrew McCutchen, arguably the team's best hitter despite his slow start, lay down a sacrifice bunt in the eighth?

    Hurdle explained his reasoning, as well as the other option he considered, the day after.

    The situation came just after the Astros had taken a one-run lead in the top of the inning. Xavier Paul, one of the fastest players on the club, drew a leadoff walk off reliever Wilton Lopez. McCutchen followed Paul and bunted foul on his first attempt. He successfully moved Paul to second on try No. 2.

    Paul moved to third on a one-out groundout, but was stranded there when Garrett Jones was called out on strikes.

    On Saturday, Hurdle said he had considered letting Paul try to steal second instead of sacrificing McCutchen's bat to get him there. But Hurdle has shown no hesitancy in having anyone in the offense attempt to sacrifice, and he went that route again.

    "There were a number of things we thought about," Hurdle said."The time from the pitcher [getting the ball from his hand to homeplate] was one of those things where it wasn't a gimme one way or another. Get the guy to second. I wanted to make sure we had a guy at second to have a shot at getting a run that way."

    Pirates have options to fill their rotation
    PITTSBURGH -- With Friday's news that it will be at least a few more weeks before Ross Ohlendorf is ready to return to the rotation, the Pirates have the option of reconsidering how they'll continue to fill the vacant rotation spot.

    Jeff Karstens has been the fill-in since Ohlendorf went on the disabled list on April 9, and the right-hander has done a respectable job in the spot starter role. In four starts, Karstens has logged 21 innings and posted a 5.14 ERA.

    Asked on Saturday if the club has considered promoting Brad Lincoln from Triple-A to make some starts this month, manager Clint Hurdle said the club has had that discussion. Calling up Lincoln -- or Brian Burres, who benefits from the fact that the Pirates now have a 40-man roster spot open -- would allow the Pirates to shift Karstens back into a bullpen role.

    "We are having that conversation about if there is a better fit with getting Jeff back into the bullpen," Hurdle said. "We're working through that. We do have a couple guys down there that aren't on our roster, but if the fit would make sense, we do have that spot."

    However, such a move does not appear imminent, primarily for two reasons. Neither Lincoln, nor Burres, has shined for Indianapolis recently. Lincoln was knocked around for six earned runs in two straight starts before bouncing back with an improved five-inning outing on Tuesday. Burres has allowed 14 runs in his past three starts.

    Also to be considered is the makeup of the Pirates' bullpen. The 'pen has done just fine without Karstens in it, which doesn't put the club in a position where it needs to find a quick way to get Karstens back pitching in relief.

    Bucs bits
    The Pirates' contrasting home and road record sits very much in line with the team's offensive production. Heading into Saturday, the Pirates were hitting just .197 at PNC Park, where the club has won just four of 13 games. On the road, Pittsburgh is 11-8 with a .255 team average.

    Infielder Josh Harrison was activated off the disabled list on Saturday and has rejoined Triple-A Indianapolis. Harrison, who is Indianapolis' starting third baseman, was hitting .375 with six stolen bases in 18 games before he got hurt.

    Reliever Jose Veras entered Saturday ranked second among all National League relief pitchers with a strikeout ratio of 14.44 per nine innings. Veras has struck out 23 in 14 1/3 innings. The only NL pitcher with a better ratio is Dodgers reliever Kenley Jansen, who has struck out 25 in 14 1/3 innings.
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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    If he goes on the DL, does that mean his "slow start clock" starts over, too? If so, God help us.

    Maybe this will be a blessing in disguise? Wood may get hot playing in his absence?

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    If it were my call I would DL him. He can still swing the bat,so he could get some work in the cage and the time off might help clear his head.
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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Sounds best to put him on the DL, it'll give him some time to straighten things out. It's not like we've been winning games off of his bat, though we'd probably be 5 over .500 if he was doing what he's supposed to be doing.

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    UPDATE 11:18: Pedro Alvarez has spent the better part of the morning stretching with trainers. He also took some ground balls and is about to take some swings. I am told a determination on whether to put him on the disabled list should come today. I am also told by two sources that the lineup in Indianapolis has been delayed in being posted for their afternoon game today --- presumably this is because they are waiting to see what the status is with Alvarez, as his replacement would come from there.

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Neal Huntington said on his radio show today that they would likely look to Josh Harrison if Pedro goes on the DL, but because Harrison was injured and just got off the DL yesterday they'll have to look at that as well. Harrison is really the only interesting option. I guess it would almost have to be Ciriaco otherwise. Maybe Andy Marte, though I'm not sure what his status is currently. He's not listed on Indy's roster anymore.

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Greg Brown said that Huntington said Peedro is not going on the DL. He can pinch hit.
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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Peedro is not going on the DL. He can pinch hit.
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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    lol. I feel for the guy, he seems very genuine in wanting to be a cornerstone of the turn around effort. It's been a rough season so I hope he can get his head straight from not playing every day.

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Quote Originally Posted by The Curtain View Post
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    lol. I feel for the guy, he seems very genuine in wanting to be a cornerstone of the turn around effort. It's been a rough season so I hope he can get his head straight from not playing every day.
    If he's only going to be able to pinch hit for a week or two, I would just as soon put him on the DL and bring someone up.

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Cleared to pinch-hit, Alvarez won't need DL
    By Jenifer Langosch / MLB.com | 05/08/11 5:12 PM ET
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    PITTSBURGH -- It appears as if Pedro Alvarez will be able to avoid going on the disabled list, though the third baseman remains limited by a right quad strain that has kept him out of the lineup since Wednesday.

    The Pirates' medical staff cleared Alvarez for use as a pinch-hitter on Sunday after watching him do some running and take ground balls at third base. The club has not given any indication on when they believe Alvarez might be ready to return to the starting lineup.

    If the Pirates can stay away from having to use Alvarez off the bench, they would maintain the option of putting Alvarez on the DL, retroactive to May 4, if such a move becomes necessary.

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Why Harrison over Hague who can also play a serviceable 3B.
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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    We have Pearce/Wood on the bench, either of whom can play 3rd base. Why bother bringing someone up?

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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    The Pirates need a bat to pull double switches and pinch hits. Pedro could straight pinch hit, but not play 3rd right now. He limits the double switch possibilities. I would have DL'd him and brought up a 2B or OF'er. As everyone can see my great managerial skills in the fantasy league, I am sure I'm right.


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    Default Re: Pitates to decide soon if Alvarez will go on DL

    Pirates third baseman Alvarez back in lineup
    Monday, May 09, 2011
    By Colin Dunlap, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
    Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez is back in the starting lineup for the club's game at 7:05 p.m. tonight against the Los Angeles Dodgers at PNC Park.

    After sustaining an injury to his right quadriceps in Tuesday's game in San Diego, Alvarez had missed the past five Pirates games and manager Clint Hurdle said late last week the club was contemplating putting the third baseman on the disabled list.

    Alvarez will hit seventh in the batting order tonight.




    Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11129...#ixzz1LswI7wLP
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