Pirates infielder Jordy Mercer was injured by a take out slide while turning a double play earlier today. The extent of the injury is unknown. The Pirates may activate utility infielder Brent Morel if Mercer misses more than a few days, writes Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. The club is already carrying a short bench, and none of the three healthy players have experience at third base. Morel was pulled from his Triple-A start today. The Pirates 40-man roster is full, so activating Morel will require a roster move.
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (on Twitter) heard that the Reds did not want to trade Johnny Cueto last month because they feared having to watch him pitch for another team in the All-Star Game. Of course, Cueto was not named an All-Star and he remains a member of the Reds as of this writing.
- The Orioles are among the teams scouting the Reds, tweets Morosi. They’re most interested in Cueto and outfielder Jay Bruce. Cueto is a free agent after the season, but Bruce is under contract through 2016 for $12.5MM with a $13MM ($1MM buyout) for 2017.
- Pirates manager Clint Hurdle acknowledged the challenges Pedro Alvarez is having in his first season at first base, but he told reporters, including Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, that he’s not about to lobby GM Neal Huntington to make a move. “I think our [GM] knows as well as I do what we’re looking to identify as strengths and weaknesses on our club,” Hurdle said. “We will do everything we can to fortify and make our club better. I’m not a fan of saying OK, we need A, B and C when A, B and C are out there [in the clubhouse].”
- Justin Upton was pulled out of today’s game early, but it wasn’t a sign of an impending trade as many speculated. The Padres simply had a muscle tighten up on him in the middle of today’s contest and he was pulled from the game as a precaution due to weather, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets.