Pirates notebook: Rehash of April 20 fight hot pregame subject


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MILWAUKEE — Absent a ruling from Major League Baseball, Carlos Gomez was in the Milwaukee Brewers’ lineup Tuesday night as the first batter Pirates starter Gerrit Cole would face.

That was the matchup that triggered a dugout-emptying fight April 20 at PNC Park, the previous time the teams met, and resulted in four suspensions, including a three-game ban for Gomez.

Gomez appealed his suspension and told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel that he had his hearing via videoconference Friday.

Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said Tuesday afternoon he had not yet been asked to meet with the umpires before the game, which happens, albeit rarely, when teams have a history. He was not sure whether umpires would react quickly to on-field incidents.

“Sometimes, I’ve been involved in these situations where you get a warning before the game,” Hurdle said. “Other times, they just let you go play, and you figure things out as you go. I would imagine if there’s any type of out-of-behavior play that there could be some quick responses to slow things down.”

In the previous matchup, Cole took issue with Gomez flipping his bat and watching a long drive to center that ended up a triple; Gomez said he was frustrated because he thought he flied out. They screamed at one another, the dugouts emptied, and Gomez and Pirates right fielder Travis Snider went at each other.

Snider already has served his two-game suspension, and Brewers catcher Martin Maldonado, who punched Snider, has served his five-game suspension. Pirates catcher Russell Martin will serve his one-game suspension when he comes off the disabled list.

Injury updates

Pirates closer Jason Grilli, on the 15-day DL because of a strained left oblique, will throw a simulated game today at Miller Park, Hurdle said.

Grilli can come off the DL at any time. Hurdle said the Pirates would wait to see how the simulated game went before making plans for a potential rehab assignment.

“We haven’t had that real-time conversation yet,” Hurdle said.

Starling Marte was not in the lineup, and Hurdle was unsure Tuesday afternoon whether the left fielder would be available off the bench.

Marte left the game Saturday night against St. Louis because of tightness in his lower back and has not played since.

Braun returns from DL

The Brewers activated right fielder Ryan Braun (right oblique strain) from the 15-day disabled list before the game, and he was in the starting lineup. Third baseman Aramis Ramirez went on the 15-day DL because of a strained left hamstring to open the roster spot for Braun.

The Brewers also recalled utilityman Elian Herrera and optioned outfielder Caleb Gindl to Class AAA Nashville before the game.

McCutchen likes the place

Center fielder Andrew McCutchen entered the game with a hit in 18 of his past 20 games at Miller Park. In that span, he had a .407 batting average (33 for 81) with four doubles and eight home runs.


Bill Brink: bbrink@post-gazette.com and Twitter @BrinkPG.

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