Pirates Notebook: Diaz starting at shortstop with Cedeno injured
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HOUSTON -- Argenis Diaz's starting debut will turn into a running road show for a while, because regular shortstop Ronny Cedeno expects to miss perhaps the rest of this weekend trip with a left-shoulder impingement causing tendon inflammation.
Cedeno said Friday, while receiving electronic stimulation to the aching shoulder, he already has taken medication and "I think I'll be ready in a couple of days."
Diaz started Thursday afternoon in San Diego, where Cedeno walked around the postgame clubhouse with a large ice-wrap on the shoulder. Cedeno isn't certain how and when it developed, but he awoke Friday morning in Houston in pain. "I couldn't swing," he said. Doctors diagnosed him before the series opener at Minute Maid Park.
As for Diaz, 23, he recorded a hit and his first error in the majors in a 3-0 loss to San Diego. He recorded his first major league hit in a pinch-hitting role in the ninth inning Aug. 1 at St. Louis.
"He played a nice game," manager John Russell said. "Didn't make a strong throw on the error, but he's a defensive player -- and he got a hit. That's one of the reasons we brought him up, to give us a defensive guy to come in late in the game or get a spot start. We like the way he plays defense, and he's gotten a couple of hits, too. So he's helped out."
In the event the Pirates need a shortstop to back up Diaz in the interim, Russell added, "If we had to, Neil [Walker] would probably go over there."
Pirates general manager Neal Huntington and scouting director Greg Smith were among the Pirates representatives expected to sit down with agents Randy and Alan Hendricks in Houston to work toward a deal to sign second-overall selection Jameson Taillon. The Hendricks brothers are based in Houston, and Taillon comes from The Woodlands about 25 miles north.
Internet reports intimated that a deal was reached already, but the parties involved wouldn't attempt to meet in private if such reports were based in fact.
In other draft news, the Pirates announced the signing of 11th-round pick Dan Grovatt, a 6-foot-1, 195-pound outfielder who hit .289 last season as a junior with the University of Virginia.
Grovatt is the Pirates' 23rd official signee -- with 23rd-round first baseman Jared Lakind yet to be formally announced -- and is set to report to short-season State College.
Pirates 2007 first-round pick Danny Moskos, 0-5 with a 10.48 ERA with Class AAA Indianapolis, was returned Friday to Class AA Altoona. Already removed from the pressure of closing duties with the Indians, Moskos was wildly inconsistent: He held opponents scoreless and hitless in two of his past three outings, but yielded four runs or more in three of his past eight appearances.
Ostensibly, the left-hander was sent back to the Curve -- where he dominated with 17 saves and a 1.45 ERA earlier -- to take the spot vacated when surgically repaired right-hander Ramon Aguero went on the minor-league disabled list with back tightness.
"Danny had struggled to right the ship at Triple-A as he continued to struggle throwing strikes," said Pirates director of player development Kyle Stark. "We tried adjusting when he was used to ensure the game situations weren't impacting his intensity level. When that didn't work, we felt like he needed an environment change to work through this."
On another minor-league front, Stark said 2009 first-round pick Tony Sanchez, after having the wiring removed after jaw surgery, is back to baseball activities and "progressing nicely." Stark added, "We're cautiously optimistic that he might be able to play before the end of the season."
First Published August 14, 2010 12:18 am