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Pirates file complaint concerning phantom tag

| Monday, Aug. 6, 2012, 6:04 p.m.

The Pirates have filed a complaint with Major League Baseball about a call in Sunday's game against the Cincinnati Reds. The move is pretty much only a formality; no discipline likely would be meted out, even if MLB agrees the Pirates have a legitimate gripe.

In the eighth inning, third base umpire Brian Gorman ruled Starling Marte was out trying to advance to third on an errant pickoff attempt. Replays showed Todd Frazier's swipe tag missed Marte, and manager Clint Hurdle left the dugout to briefly protest the call.

“I said, ‘That just didn't look right' and (Gorman) said, ‘He got him,' ” Hurdle said Monday. “At that point, I didn't want to push him because I think he might've had a quick ejection button with me again.”

Gorman ejected Hurdle on Saturday for arguing when both dugouts were warned after Josh Harrison was hit by a pitch in the second inning.

Gorman's gaffe Sunday potentially cost the Pirates a run in what at the time was a two-run game. The Pirates scored twice in the ninth to win, 6-2.

“It was a tough point in the game ... but you take the course of action you need to take,” Hurdle said. “There's a formal way to go about doing it and we're in that process now. You file your report and where it goes from there, I'm not always sure. But that's really none of my business.”

MLB director of umpiring Randy Marsh was at Sunday's game in Cincinnati. One of Marsh's duties is to review close calls and plays and address any concerns with the umpiring crew.

• In the ninth inning Friday against the Reds, Andrew McCutchen was hit by a pitch. The incident stoked some ire in the Pirates' clubhouse, but they did not retaliate in the series. “We've had plenty of internal discussion and we're where we need to be with it,” Hurdle said. “Sometimes, accidents happen. Sometimes, coincidences happen. Sometimes, things happen that make you go ‘huh?' You figure it out as best you can and prepare for the next time you're going to see them. We're well aware of what we need to do the next time we face those guys.” The Pirates face the Reds on Sept. 10-12 in Cincinnati and Sept. 28-30 at PNC Park.

• Reliever Juan Cruz (shoulder) was scheduled to toss one inning Monday to begin his rehab assignment with Double-A Altoona. Cruz has been on the DL since July 18.

— Rob Biertempfel

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