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Pirates backup catcher Stewart likely having knee surgery

| Monday, March 17, 2014, 1:39 p.m.
Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Pirates catcher Chris Stewart throws out a runner next to pitcher Gerrit Cole during a game against the Twins on March 12, 2014, at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Fla.
Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Pirates catcher Chris Stewart works behind the plate against the Twins on March 12, 2014, at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Fla.
Christopher Horner | Tribune-Review
Pirates catcher Chris Stewart works behind the plate against the Twins on March 12, 2014, at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, Fla.

BRADENTON, Fla. — Pirates backup catcher Chris Stewart is likely headed for surgery after injuring his knee March 12 against the Twins, according to the Pirates. Stewart, acquired in a trade from the Yankees this offseason, is scheduled to visit with Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion this week and the Pirates stated surgery later in the week is likely.

“I wasn't aware (Stewart was hurt) until we asked him to stretch out one more at bat and he said ‘I think I'm good,'” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.

Hurdle declined to offer an immediate timetable or description of the injury, but it's not believed to be season-ending.

“I'm not a doctor,” Hurdle said.

Stewart has not been in the Pirates' lineup since March 12. The club did not have an immediate timetable for Stewart's return on Monday but Tony Sanchez will now almost certainly be with the club on Opening Day as the reserve catcher. Stewart is the superior defender but Sanchez has a better bat.

“(Sanchez) caught a bulk of ballgames for us in a playoff race last year so I would have a comfort with that,” Hurdle said.

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