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Pirates notebook: No All-Star break for Cole

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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.

Sunday, July 13, 2014, 3:39 p.m.

CINCINNATI — Gerrit Cole will not be taking a break like the rest of his non-All-Star teammates early this week as the Pirates right-hander works his way back on the mound following his second trip to the disabled list this season.

Cole (lat strain) threw from flat ground Sunday at Cincinnati. He was schedule to be off Monday and then throw from flat ground Tuesday and Wednesday at a quiet PNC Park.

Manager Clint Hurdle said Cole will throw a 25-pitch side session Thursday that will contain a mix of fastballs and changeups.

“Then we'll regroup after he throws his side for the next steps,” Hurdle said.

Cole will not come off the disabled list when he is first eligible to return July 20. He is unlikely to return before August.

Order restored

Hurdle mapped out his post-break, Cole-less pitching rotation.

Francisco Liriano will open the second half against the Rockies on Friday at PNC Park and he will be followed by Charlie Morton, Jeff Locke, Edinson Volquez and Vance Worley.

To make room for Liriano's return Sunday, Matt Hague was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis.

Hurdle looks to savor ASG

Hurdle is looking forward to Tuesday's All-Star Game more than his last trip in 2008 when he was the National League manager after guiding the Colorado Rockies to the 2007 World Series.

“The last one I signed up for was the 15-inning game, and that was like an algebra test in a dentist store. It was absolute clenched-fist (game) from start to finish,” Hurdle said. “To go back to the hotel at 3:30 and know you're catching a 9:30 flight back to Denver. It was like ‘Wow.' ”

Hurdle anticipates he will be better able to savor this trip and plans to be something of a fan, bringing memorabilia to be signed.

“When you go in that spare room with all those things to sign, it's the most grotesque volume of things to sign ever in the history of pro sports that I have ever dealt with,” Hurdle said. “Players bring jerseys from other guys, their jerseys, balls, bats, helmets. It's like a sporting goods store.”

Hurdle said he had a brief chat with Reds third baseman Todd Frazier, a first-time All-Star, over the weekend.

“He said ‘It's a dream come true,' ” Hurdle said. “I said ‘Kid, it's a dream come true for a 56-year-old man.' It's a priceless moment.”

Minor matters

Pirates' 2013 first-round pick Austin Meadows was promoted to Low-A West Virginia on Saturday and went 1 for 4 in his debut at the full-season level. After an excellent pro debut in 2013, Meadows missed the first three months of the season with a hamstring injury and a re-aggravation of the injury.

He said it

Hurdle on Andrew McCutchen's two-homer game Saturday: “It's what elite players are capable of doing. Not everyone can do it. When you look at those kinds of things, all those things you draw up in the backyard when you're 6, the elite players do it on this stage: in front of a packed house against a good ballclub. He beats No. 1s and No. 2s, he beats late-inning relievers. It's fun to watch.”

Travis Sawchik is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at or via Twitter @Sawchik_Trib

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