CHICAGO — Outfielder John Bowker was called up from Triple-A Indianapolis, and will be used in right field and at first base. “He gives us another option off the bench and occasional spot starts,” manager John Russell said.
The Pirates needed another bat, as Jeff Clement is on the disabled list with a sore knee. Clement today will begin a brief rehab stint with Indy, which ends its season Monday.
Bowker found out late last night he was being recalled. In 41 games with the San Francisco Giants this season, he hit .207 with three homers. Since being traded to the Pirates on July 31, Bowker hit .319 with four homers for Indy.
“I’m looking forward to an opportunity to play. That’s all I can ask for,” Bowker said. “When (the trade) happened, at first I was in shock. I’ve been with the Giants my whole career. I’m looking at this as a new opportunity for me.”
»»» Neil Walker had a big night Tuesday in the 14-7 rout of the Cubs. He went 4 for 5 with four RBI (tying a career high) and extended his hitting streak to eight games. In the sixth, he smacked a two-run homer over the ivy in center field.
“I see the ball pretty well here,” Walker said. “The wind blowing at your back kind of helps sometimes, too.”
During his eight-game streak, Walker is batting .400 (14 for 35) with eight runs scored, three doubles, two triples, three homers and 13 RBI.
»»» In 14 games against the Cubs this year, Garrett Jones is hitting .385 (20 for 52) with five walks, eight runs, five doubles, four homers and 16 RBI.
»»» Andrew McCutchen is one walk shy of matching his total of 54 from last season. He’s batting .485 (16 for 33) this year at Wrigley Field.
»»» Charlie Morton is 1-10 with a 10.03 ERA. Since earned runs became an official stat in 1912, the only other Pirates pitcher with an ERA of 7.00-plus in a season in which he had 10 decisions was Steve Blass, who in 1973 went 3-9 with a 9.81 ERA.
»»» Congrats to Double-A Altoona, which last night clinched its first division title since 2004. The Curve reached 80 victories for the second time in franchise history.
Lineups for this afternoon’s game:
Pirates (44-87) – 1. Andrew McCutchen 8, 2. Jose Tabata lf, 3. Neil Walker 2b, 4. Garrett Jones 1b, 5. Pedro Alvarez 3b, 6. Ryan Doumit rf, 7. Ronny Cedeno ss, 8. Chris Snyder c, 9. James McDonald (2-4, 5.65) rhp
Cubs (56-77) – 1. Blake DeWitt 2b, 2. Starlin Castro ss, 3. Kosuke Fukudome rf, 4. Micah Hoffpauir 1b, 5. Tyler Colvin cf, 6. Alfonso Soriano lf, 7. Jeff Baker 3b, 8. Koyie Hill c, 9. Tom Gorzelanny (7-8, 3.98) lhp