HOUSTON — Pirates right-hander took another step — sort of a half-step, actually — to getting back on the mound.
Saturday afternoon, Ohlendorf (back spasms) had a light side session at Minute Maid Park. Ohlendorf threw 22 pitches from halfway up the mound without pain.
“He’s over the hump,” pitching coach Joe Kerrigan said. “Now we can work on getting him back out there.”
The Pirates played it cautious, using yesterday’s workout to test Ohlendorf’s cranky back. He’s slated to throw a regular bullpen session today. If all goes well, Kerrigan will map out the rest of Ohlendorf’s rehab plan.
Although he is eligible to come off the disabled list Wednesday, Ohlendorf is at least two weeks away from rejoining the rotation. After missing three weeks, Ohlendorf will likely need two minor-league rehab starts to get back in form.
— Outfielder Jonathan Van Every was dealt to the Boston Red Sox for a player to be named later. Van Every hit .314 with two homers for Triple-A Indianapolis.
— Astros pitcher Roy Oswalt didn’t have much time to enjoy beating the Pirates on Friday. Yesterday, he was given permission to leave the team and drive to Mississippi, where his parents’ home was destroyed by a tornado. Although the home was leveled, there were no injuries.
Lineups for tonight’s game:
Pirates (7-9) — 1. Aki Iwamura 2b, 2. Bobby Crosby 1b, 3. Andrew McCutchen cf, 4. Garrett Jones rf, 5. Lastings Milledge lf, 6. Andy LaRoche 3b, 7. Jason Jaramillo c, 8. Chris Jakubauskas (2010 debut) rhp, 9. Ronny Cedeno ss
Astros (6-10) — 1. Michael Bourn cf, 2. Jeff Keppinger 2b, 3. Pedro Feliz 3b, 4. Lance Berkman 1b, 5. Hunter Pence rf, 6. Cory Sullivan lf, 7. Tommy Manzella ss, 8. Humbeto Quintero c, 9. Wandy Rodriguez (0-2, 4.67) lhp