MILWAUKEE — OF Alex Presley and RHP Kyle McPherson were called up today, which makes them both eligible for the postseason roster. 1B Jeff Clement was outrighted to High-A Bradenton and INF Chase d’Arnaud was optioned to Bradenton. Clement and d’Arnaud will rejoin the team Monday in Pittsburgh, as Bradenton’s season ends Sunday. If they had gone down to Triple-A Indy, they’d have to wait 10 days before returning to Pittsburgh.
Major league active rosters can be expanded Saturday, meaning the Pirates can bring up anyone from the minors who’s on their 40-man roster. Eric Fryer, Jeff Locke and Justin Wilson would seem to be sure callups. Other possibilities: Yamaico Navarro, Matt Hague, Chris Leroux (who isn’t on the 40-man yet), Bryan Morris, Evan Meek, Daniel McCutchen and (once he finishes his rehab assignment) Gustavo Nunez. The Pirates probably will do a couple of waves of callups, the first tomorrow and another once Indy ends its run in the Triple-A International League playoffs.
»»» Speaking of Locke, it sure looks as if he will fill Erik Bedard’s spot in the starting rotation. A short while ago, manager Clint Hurdle said the rotation will be announced tomorrow, after the callups arrive from Indy.
»»» CF Andrew McCutchen is just getting some extra time off today. “It seemed like a good time to piggyback with an off day,” Hurdle said. The last time McCutchen was not in the starting lineup was game 100 in Houston, and he wound up pinch-hitting that day.
»»» Check out the video above — “Buctown 4.0″ by Pittsburgh Slim. Thanks to Chukky Okobi, executive VP of Four Twelve Records, for the info.
»»» The Pirates have posted back-to-back shutouts and have not allowed a run in their past 21 innings overall. Each of the team’s past three wins was by shutout. The last time the Pirates ran off three straight shutouts was 1976, when they beat the Cardinals 8-0 on Oct. 2 and took a pair of 1-0 wins in a doubleheader against St. Louis on Oct. 3.
»»» In six games this season at Miller Park, the Pirates have hit 11 home runs, which is the most by any visiting team here. Seven players — Garrett Jones, Andrew McCutchen, Rod Barajas, Clint Barmes, Neil Walker, Pedro Alvarez and Casey McGehee — have gone deep at Bernie Brewer’s house.
»»» Indy named RHP Rick VandenHurk its team MVP after going 12-5 with a 3.07 ERA in 20 outings (18 starts). Other team awards went to RHP Tim Wood (reliever of the year), LHP Locke (starting pitcher of the year), 2B/3B/SS Anderson Hernandez (defensive player of the year) and OF Brandon Boggs (offensive player of the year).
»»» According to Bloomberg BusinessWeek, the Pirates rank 23rd on the list of “smartest spenders” among pro sports franchises. The rankings are determined via a calculation of payroll amounts and regular- and post-season wins over the past five years. BBW gives the Pirates an efficiency index of minus-0.89, which makes them the fifth-best MLB team (the lower the number, the better the ranking). The Penguins (minus-1.4352) rank third overall and the Steelers (minus-1.0462) are 14th. The worst team in baseball is the New York Mets, with a rating of 2.3020. The pro franchise that got the least bang for its buck was the St. Louis Rams (4.0687).
Game 131: Pirates @ Brewers, 8:05 p.m. ET
Pirates (70-60): 1. Alex Presley cf, 2. Jose Tabata lf, 3. Travis Snider rf, 4. Garrett Jones rf, 5. Pedro Alvarez 3b, 6. Michael McKenry c, 7. Josh Harrison 2b, 8. Clint Barmes ss, 9. Jeff Karstens rhp (5-3, 3.47)
Brewers (62-68): 1. Nyjer Morgan rf, 2. Rickie Weeks 2b, 3. Ryan Braun lf, 4. Aramis Ramirez 3b, 5. Corey Hart 1b, 6. Jonathan Lucroy c, 7. Carlos Gomez cf, 8. Jean Segura ss, 9. Mark Rogers rhp (2-1, 4.28)