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Pittsburgh vs. Philadelphia, 29 July 2007

1:35 PM

Ian Snell vs. Kyle Kendrick. Here's the box; no Ryan Doumit again.

Some notes for today:

-P- John Van Benschoten has thankfully been shipped back to Indianapolis. The guy's 27 - I'd say it's time to try him in the bullpen to see if he might have any success there. Tom Gorzelanny will miss his next start and is supposed to start next Saturday, but we'll see about that. Tony Armas will rejoin the rotation, at least for the next week. Obviously, this says quite a lot about the state of the Pirates' pitching depth. There really isn't anyone at Indianapaolis who should be called up to take that spot. UPDATE: Jonah Bayliss will take Armas' spot in the bullpen. Leave it to the Pirates to replace Tony Armas with someone who may not actually be an improvement.

-P- Ty Wigginton is rejoining the NL Central - he's been traded to the Astros for reliever Dan Wheeler. Wigginton will replace Mike Lamb, a free agent, as the Astros' multi-corner player next year. I don't know what Wigginton's immediate role will be, but this move could signal that Morgan Ensberg or Mark Loretta is about to be traded. Ben Zobrist has been recalled from the minors to replace Wigginton. As for Wheeler, he had a high ERA but a good track record and strikeout rate, so he should be able to help the Rays' bullpen.  

In other Rays news, they dumped Jorge Cantu (and fringe outfield prospect Shaun Cumberland) on the Reds for pitchers Calvin Medlock and Brian Shackelford. Medlock, 24, was sensational in Class AA but hit a wall in Class AAA this year; Shackelford is roster filler. If there's anywhere Cantu's skill set - power and absolutely nothing else - might work out, it's the Great American Ballpark, but he's just having a terrible year in both the minors and the majors, so I imagine he'll have to hone his craft in Class AAA Louisville for a while. He's still only 25 and already has a 28-homer season under his belt, though, so getting him for two marginal relievers is a minor coup for the Reds. Medlock might turn out to be a decent middle reliever, but I wouldn't hold my breath.