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Some protest-free G20 items

Some more “G20″ notes — none of which have anything to do with protesters, blocked-off roads or French president Nicolas Sarkozy:

  • Garrett Jones leads all rookies with 20 homers. He is the fourth Pirates rookie to hit 20-plus in a season, joining Jason Bay (26 in 2004), Ralph Kiner (23 in 1946) and Johnny Rizzo (23 in 1938).
  • Jones hit his first homer of the season July 2 and his 20th last night. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, he is the second player ever to hit 20 homers without hitting one before July 1. Kevin Maas, as I mentioned before, was the first.
  • At 28, Jones is the oldest rookie to reach 20 homers since the Twins’ Bobby Darwin. Darwin, who began his career as a pitcher, hit 22 homers as a 29-year-old rookie in 1972.

– Manager John Russell does not believe Jesse Chavez is wearing down and said the reliever will not be shut down before the season is over. Chavez has thrown 62.2 innings this season, which is less than he threw in 2008 (83.2 combined innings for the Pirates and Indy) and 2007 (80.1 innings). “I don’t see a decline in what he’s doing,” Russell said. “He’s still got his velocity. His command was a little off last night.”

– The MRI on Ramon Vazquez’s knee showed no structural damage, and no surgery is necessary. Vazquez is day to day.

– Jose Ascanio (right shoulder tendinitis) threw a simulated game and was pain-free. “A little erratic, but healthy,” Russell said. Ascanio will throw another sim game, then likely will be activated off the DL.

– Joel Hanrahan’s elbow remains a bit tender, and his status is day to day

– Andy LaRoche (illness) was exhausted after playing last night, and is being given today off to recuperate.

Lineups for tonight’s game:

REDS (69-81)

  1. Franklin Stubbs cf
  2. Paul Janish ss
  3. Joey Votto 1b
  4. Brandon Phillips 2b
  5. Scott Rolen 3b
  6. Jonny Gomes rf
  7. Darnell McDonald lf
  8. Ramon Hernandez c
  9. Johnny Cueto (9-10, 4.41) rhp

PIRATES (56-91)

  1. Andrew McCutchen cf
  2. Delwyn Young 2b
  3. Garrett Jones 1b
  4. Ryan Doumit c
  5. Brandon Moss rf
  6. Lastings Milledge lf
  7. Neil Walker 3b
  8. Ronny Cedeno ss
  9. Zach Duke (10-14, 3.96) lhp

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