Morton still sore, so Vasquez is Plan B


DENVER — Charlie Morton still is listed as the Pirates’ starter Friday against Kansas City, but that could change. The right-hander continues to battle a sore hamstring and might have to be skipped again. If so, the Pirates would call up Virgil Vasquez from Triple-A Indianapolis.

Vasquez, a right-hander, started last night for Indy, but was removed from the game after one inning.

“We’re taking it step by step,” manager John Russell said. “Charlie still feels (the hamstring strain) and he’s gonna feel it. A high hamstring (strain) can take a while to heal.”

• The Pirates are mulling a trade for reliever Luis Ayala, who was designated for assignment by the Twins. The Pirates have an open spot on the 40-man roster after Craig Monroe was DFA’ed. Ayala, 31, went 1-2 with a 4.18 ERA in 28 outings with Minnesota. Ayala’s salary is $1.3 million.

Lineups for tonight’s game:

INDIANS — 1. Jamey Carroll 2b, 2. Grady Sizemore cf, 3. Victor Martinez 1b, 4. Shin-Soo Choo lf, 5. Mark DeRosa rf, 6. Jhonny Peralta 3b, 7. Luis Valbuena ss, 8. Kelly Shoppach c, 9. Carl Pavano (6-5, 5.73) rhp

PIRATES — 1.Andrew McCutchen cf, 2. Nyjer Morgan lf, 3. Freddy Sanchez 2b, 4. Adam LaRoche 1b, 5. Andy LaRoche 3b, 6. Brandon Moss rf, 7. Jason Jaramillo c, 8. Jack Wilson ss, 9. Zach Duke (7-5, 3.18) lhp