MIAMI -- The Pirates and San Francisco have had trade talks regarding second baseman Freddy Sanchez and, to a lesser extent, first baseman Adam LaRoche, each of whom can be a free agent after this season.
The Giants have had a scout following Sanchez, a source confirmed yesterday, and their interest in LaRoche goes back several months. Their preference at first base, though, is for a right-handed bat.
Sanchez has a vesting option in his contract that allows him to trigger an $8.5 million option if he achieves 635 plate appearances or 600 plate appearances plus an All-Star berth. The latter will be known today when selections are made.
LaRoche is the Pirates' second-highest paid player at $7.05 million, and there is some skepticism within the team that he can be moved with about half of that amount still due.
Other players the Pirates are known to have discussed with other teams -- and such discussions are highly commonplace and vary in their intensity -- are shortstop Jack Wilson, reliever John Grabow and, only in an exploratory sense, closer Matt Capps. The latter apparently would be moved only at a high price.
Sanchez missed a second game to tightness in his lower right back, and he might miss another this afternoon.
It was injured when he got out of a taxi outside Land Shark Stadium Friday afternoon. He felt no pull and nothing near the spine.
"It was more of a spasm," he said. "It just locked up. Hopefully, it won't be long."
Ryan Doumit completed his two-game stint with Bradenton by going 0 for 5 with a strikeout as a designated hitter. He will go to Class AAA Indianapolis today, and the length of his stay there will be determined by evaluators' observations more than numbers.
"We'll have people there watching him, seeing how he swings," manager John Russell said.
One of those will be general manager Neal Huntington.
The default plan remains that Doumit would return after the All-Star break, but Doumit is aiming to make it sooner, perhaps in Philadelphia next weekend.
• The All-Star announcements will be made on a TBS broadcast that begins at 1 p.m. Russell reiterated his support for Sanchez and starter Zach Duke. "I think either one of those guys would be very deserving," he said.
• Ian Snell's scheduled start in Indianapolis last night was rained out. He was pushed back to today.
• The Pirates promoted outfielder Jonel Pacheco and catchers Milver Reyes and Miguel Perez from Class AA Altoona to Indianapolis.