Travel day today - sorry for the lack of updates.
It's pretty nice to see the Cubs fighting in the dugout, but it would have been even nicer to pick up a win. The Brewers lost, but the Cardinals won, so now the Pirates are again one game behind both of them. The Pirates got some offense from Alex Presley, Matt Diaz and Michael McKenry, but it wasn't enough after Kevin Correia was driven from the game in the fourth.
Also, Andrew McCutchen was finally added to the All-Star team, which I felt sure wasn't going to happen after Bruce Bochy snubbed him again in favor of Andre Ethier in a move that really looked like a deliberate jab at Clint Hurdle. Well, whatever - justice was done.
Pedro Alvarez was activated and optioned to Class AAA Indianapolis, which I see has already been discussed here. Rob Biertempfel reports that Alvarez will be eligible for another option next year, so that doesn't appear to be a problem. It looks like the Pirates just want to give him a little extra time to get his timing back - that's what Neal Huntington is saying, and I really hope that's all it is. If it is, it's a shame that Alvarez has to be treated that way, but it does seem sensible, since he seems to struggle most of the time he starts a new year or at a new level.