Notebook: With closer hurt, Pirates turn to ex-Cat Melancon

2013-07-24T00:00:00Z Notebook: With closer hurt, Pirates turn to ex-Cat MelanconThe Associated Press The Associated Press
July 24, 2013 12:00 am  • 

WASHINGTON - Former Arizona Wildcats pitcher Mark Melancon will be the Pittsburgh closer after the Pirates placed National League saves leader Jason Grilli on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right forearm.

Grilli, who left Monday's game at Washington in the ninth inning with discomfort in his forearm, traveled to Pittsburgh and will be examined by team doctors.

The All-Star right hander (0-1, 2.34 ERA) has 30 saves. Manager Clint Hurdle said Melancon (2-1, 0.97, two saves) will assume the closer's role in Grilli's absence.

"It's going to be somewhat of a seamless transition. We can't replace Jason, but we are going to move Mark to the closer spot," said Hurdle, who will use several relievers to fill Melancon's eighth-inning role.

Orioles pick up K-Rod

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The Baltimore Orioles bolstered their bullpen with a late-inning arm Tuesday, acquiring reliever Francisco Rodriguez from the last-place Milwaukee Brewers for minor league infielder Nick Delmonico.

K-Rod was one of the game's best relievers during his time with the Angels, saving a major league-record 62 games in 2008. He later spent three frustrating seasons as a closer with the Mets. But Rodriguez, 31, has revitalized his career the past three years in Milwaukee, going 1-1 with 10 saves and a 1.09 ERA in 25 games this season.

Padres lose Marquis

MILWAUKEE - San Diego Padres pitcher Jason Marquis, 34, suffered a complete tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow and will undergo Tommy John surgery as soon as next week, manager Bud Black said Tuesday.

"He wants to come back and compete," Black said.

Marquis (9-5, 4.05) had lost three straight decisions. He went on the DL Sunday.

Inside pitch

• Reds third base coach Mark Berry is back with the club after two months of chemotherapy and radiation this spring for throat cancer. "Mark's over there at third, I guess everybody is inspired to hit," Reds pitcher Tony Cingrani said about Cincinnati getting 32 hits in Berry's first two games back.

• Mariners manager Eric Wedge missed his second straight game for more tests, a day after suffering a dizzy spell that landed him in the hospital. Bench coach Robby Thompson filled in as manager for a second game.

• A proposed $500 million renovation of historic Wrigley Field received crucial backing Tuesday from the local alderman and a Chicago City Council committee, clearing a path for final approval.

• The New York Mets placed injured right-hander Shaun Marcum (1-10, 5.29 ERA) on waivers for the purpose of giving him his unconditional release.

• Milwaukee starter Donovan Hand lasted four innings Tuesday against the Padres before he left with a bruised right hand after being hit by a pitch. X-rays of his hand were negative, and he's listed as day-to-day.

• Catcher Mark Thomas, a Double-A catcher for the Tampa Bay Rays, was suspended for 50 games without pay for a second violation under minor league baseball's drug policy.

• Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera sat out Detroit's game against the White Sox on Tuesday with an injured left hip.

• Today is the 30-year anniversary of George Brett's pine tar game. He hit a go-ahead homer in the ninth inning, but it was ruled illegal after Yankees manager Billy Martin asked umpire Tim McClelland to check the pine tar on the Kansas City star's bat. Brett raced out of the dugout to argue, and four days later, the AL overturned the ump's ruling. The game resumed nearly a month after that, with the Royals closing out a 5-4 win.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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