The Pirates placed right-hander Stolmy Pimentel on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to Friday, due to right shoulder inflammation and recalled right-hander Jared Hughes from Class AAA Indianapolis to take his place.
The Pirates also selected the contract of Vin Mazzaro and optioned right-hander Brandon Cumpton to Indianapolis.
The moves give the Pirates eight relievers and only four active starting pitchers. Hurdle has said he does not plan to use Casey Sadler as a starter despite the fact that Sadler has started in the minors.
Pimentel, 24, has struck out 11 in 11⅓ innings, with six walks,10 hits and four runs. His average fastball velocity has dropped about 4 mph from last season.
In late March, the Pirates designated Mazzaro for assignment. They could not find a trade partner for him and he accepted his outright assignment to Indianapolis. The Pirates had one open spot on the 40-man roster, which Mazzaro took.
Cumpton made two starts for the Pirates after Wandy Rodriguez went on the disabled list. He allowed six runs in 12⅔ innings, walking only one batter and striking out nine.
The move does not shed much light on the Pirates' plans for Monday's game against the San Francisco Giants, for which they have yet to name a starter. They could activate Rodriguez from the 15-day DL, or they could recall Jeff Locke.
Bill Brink: email@example.com.