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Pirates set to sign compensation-round pick Friday

Pirates compensatory pick Barrett Barnes hit.325 with nine homers and 49 RBI this season for Texas Tech. The outfielder added 19 stolen bases on 20 attempts. (AP Photo/Alonzo Adams)

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at INDIANS7:05 p.m., today, Progressive Field, Cleveland

TV/radio: Root Sports/KDKA-FM (93.7), WCNS-AM (1480), WJPA-AM (1450), Pirates Radio Network, XM 177

Today's probable starters: Pirates RHP James McDonald (5-2, 2.39 ERA) vs. Indians RHP Justin Masterson (2-6, 4.76)

4:05 p.m. Saturday: Pirates RHP A.J. Burnett (6-2, 3.61) vs. Indians RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (6-4, 4.91)

1:05 p.m. Sunday: Pirates RHP Brad Lincoln (3-2, 3.15) vs. Indians RHP Jeanmar Gomez (4-5, 4.71)

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'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Thursday, June 14, 2012, 7:50 p.m.

BALTIMORE — Outfielder Barrett Barnes, the compensation-round pick whom the Pirates drafted 45th overall last week, is slated to be in Pittsburgh today to have a physical and then sign for a $1 million bonus. His bonus is roughly $136,000 below the slot amount.

On Thursday, the Pirates signed their third-round pick, right-hander Jon Sandfort. Baseball America reported that he received a bonus of $462,900, the full slot amount. He was assigned to the rookie-level Gulf Coast League team in Bradenton, Fla.

The Pirates have signed seven of their top 11 picks, and general manager Neal Huntington is not surprised there have been a lot of quick signings under the new draft rules. Huntington said he expected top pick Mark Appel and 15th-rounder Jonathan Youngblood would be “challenging” to sign.

Huntington said the Pirates still have cash to spend on Appel, who's slotted for a $2.9 million bonus as the eighth pick.

“With (picks) 1 through 10, every dollar you go over (slot), you've got to create a dollar somewhere else,” he said. “We've been able to create some dollars, so it isn't taking away from the allotted $2.9 million that's sitting there for (Appel). If we start chipping away at some guys beyond the 10th round for more than $100,000, then we do start losing money we've got available (for Appel). It's all part of the exercise.”

• Huntington said first baseman Jeff Clement, who's batting .294 with seven homers for Triple-A Indianapolis, is bothered by mild inflammation in his surgically repaired knee. “It's going to be something he has off and on for the rest of his playing career,” Huntington said.

• Reliever Daniel McCutchen (strained oblique) began a rehab assignment with High-A Bradenton last night. Against Fort Myers, he allowed a double and posted one strikeout in two scoreless innings.

• At 7 p.m. Monday, reliever Jason Grilli will take questions during a one-hour “town hall meeting” at

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