April 25: Hansen to DL; Meek recalled; McLouth still out; Wilson scratched

Craig Hansen 3.jpg

UPDATED 9:55 p.m. ET: Jack Wilson was a game time scratch from the lineup because of that left middle finger strain that’s been bothering him now for a week. Wilson missed games on April 15th, 17th and 18th because of the injury, which he sustained while swinging.

Ramon Vazquez took Wilson’s place in the lineup. The lineup below has been updated to indicate the changes.

UPDATED 8:20 p.m. ET: The Pirates have placed right-handed reliever Craig Hansen (pictured left) on the disabled list retroactive to April 20 with neck spasms. Taking Hansen’s place on the 25-man roster will be Evan Meek, who has arrived and can pitch on Saturday.

Hansen said the stiffness started around his right shoulder blade midway through Spring Training. He battled through it and pitched through it, but on Friday he began experiencing neck spasms, too. Hansen has been shut down from throwing for the time being, hopeful that the stiffness and spasms go away on their own.

The fact that the Pirates used five relievers in Friday’s extra-inning game exacerbated the need to put Hansen on the DL and get another reliever out here. Manager John Russell revealed on Saturday that Hansen was not available to pitch on Friday.


Meek arrived in the clubhouse shortly before batting practice after getting a 4 am ET wakeup call in Columbus, where the Indianapolis club was playing the Triple-A Clippers. He threw 16 pitches in a relief appearance on Friday night, but Russell said that Meek would be good to throw 30-35 pitches if needed on Saturday.

Meek was in line to make the Opening Day roster until he missed the last two weeks of Spring Training because of a tired shoulder, bronchitis and the stomach flu. As a result, he began the season in Indianapolis, where the righty allowed one run on three hits in 8 2/3 innings. He walked seven and struck out seven.


Also, no Nate McLouth in the lineup again on Saturday. He was scratched from Friday’s lineup after suffereing a right oblique strain during batting practice Friday afternoon. Interestingly enough, both Craig Monroe and Eric Hinske are in Saturday’s lineup.

Russell said that McLouth reported feeling better on Saturday, but the team is not going to push him back on the field too quickly. Oblique injuries are among the most lingering and a premature return could do too much damage long term. McLouth is listed as day-to-day right now, but I wouldn’t expect him to start Sunday’s game either.

There is still no talk about the injury being serious enough to land McLouth on the DL. He will not be available to pinch hit on Saturday.


Other notes: Russell said he will stay away from using Sean Burnett on Saturday, after Burnett tossed two innings (one quite stressful frame) in Friday’s affair. … Zach Duke is going for a second straight road win this season on Saturday, something he hasn’t done since 2005.


Pirates lineup:

  1. Nyjer Morgan (CF)
  2. Freddy Sanchez (2B)
  3. Craig Monroe (LF)
  4. Adam LaRoche (1B)
  5. Eric Hinske (RF)
  6. Andy LaRoche (3B)
  7. Jason Jaramillo (C) Ramon Vazquez (SS)
  8. Jack Wilson (SS) Jason Jaramillo (C)
  9. Zach Duke (LHP)

Padres lineup:

  1. Scott Hairston (CF)
  2. David Eckstein (2B)
  3. Adrian Gonzalez (1B)
  4. Chase Headley (LF)
  5. Kevin Kouzmanoff (3B)
  6. Nick Hundley (C)
  7. Chris Burke (SS)
  8. Jody Gerut (RF)
  9. Shawn Hill (RHP)

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