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Capps may be able to pitch today

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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.

Saturday, May 9, 2009
 

• Closer Matt Capps (elbow bruise) played catch Friday and is scheduled to throw off a mound this morning. If all goes well, he might be able to pitch in the game this afternoon, but there's no rush to get him back on the field. "With a day game, we might be a little more cautious," manager John Russell said. "If he's not 100 percent comfortable, we've got the off day Monday to get him ready to go Tuesday."

• Right-hander Jimmy Barthmaier will have reconstructive elbow surgery Tuesday and will miss the rest of the season for Triple-A Indianapolis. Dr. James Andrews will perform the operation. Barthmaier has been out since April 11.

• Shortstop Jack Wilson (sprained finger) began his three-game rehab assignment last night with Indianapolis. Wilson will be activated Tuesday from the disabled list.

• A battery of tests on right-hander Craig Hansen (neck spasms) came back negative, meaning there's no structural damage. There remains no timetable for when he will come off the DL. "It's going kind of slow," Russell said.

• Until last night, when they faced the Mets' Jonathan Niese, the Pirates had gone 15 games without seeing a left-handed starting pitcher.

• Catcher Adam Melhuse was signed as a free agent and assigned to Indianapolis. Melhuse, 37, played a combined 15 games in the majors last season for Colorado and Texas. Over eight seasons, he hit .234 with 24 homers and 98 RBI.

Digits

.321 -- Combined batting average of catchers Jason Jaramillo and Robinzon Diaz since Ryan Doumit went on the DL.

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