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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.

Monday, May 23, 2011

-- A team source confirmed Sunday that the Texas Rangers have inquired about a possible trade for closer Joel Hanrahan. However, the Pirates rejected the overture and are not actively shopping Hanrahan. The right-hander has converted all 13 of his save opportunities this season.

-- Reliever Evan Meek, who'd been out with right shoulder tendinitis, was activated off the disabled list last night. To open a roster spot, Daniel Moskos was sent back to Triple-A Indianapolis, leaving the Pirates one lefty in the bullpen. Meek will resume pitching in high-leverage, late-inning situations -- but not necessarily as the main setup guy. "He'll pitch toward the back of the game," manager Clint Hurdle said. "We'll probably get him involved in the seventh or if there's a quick (eighth) inning out there. We'll see how it goes."

-- The Pirates might discipline whomever -- whether it was a front-office employee or someone connected with Triple-A Indianapolis -- concocted the cover story that infielder Pedro Ciriaco was injured when Ciriaco in fact was being called up to Pittsburgh. "We're in the midst of looking into what happened, how it happened and why it happened," general manager Neal Huntington said. "Blatant dishonesty is not something we will tolerate. Our hope is it was an ill-fated attempt at humor ... but we are digging into it. If it was a blatant attempt at dishonesty, there will be some consequences."

-- Ciriaco's versatility will come into play while he's with the Pirates, but Hurdle said the outfield is probably no longer an option. "The outfield was an experiment (in spring training)," Hurdle said. "I heard the term 'adventurous' (used), and I think that was appropriate."

-- Huntington refuted a Yahoo! Sports report that high schooler Dylan Bundy warned the Pirates not to take him with the first overall draft pick. "We've not been told by any player in our four years here not to draft them," Huntington said.

-- It doesn't seem likely that right-hander Brad Lincoln (4-3, 4.27 at Indy) will supplant Jeff Karstens as the Pirates' No. 5 starter. "We just don't have a spot right now," Huntington said. "At some point he's going to have to force the door open. Until then, we want him to continue to do what he's doing." Karstens is 2-2 with a 3.82 ERA in seven starts while filling in for Ross Ohlendorf (right shoulder posterior strain), who is still at least a few days away from being able to begin a rehab assignment.

-- Right-handed reliever Mike Crotta (elbow posterior inflammation) has not yet thrown a pitch since going on the DL on May 11. "He's still in rest mode, trying to get the inflammation out," Huntington said. "Sooner than later, he'll being a throwing program."

-- Left-hander Donnie Veal, who's on the mend after Tommy John surgery, was assigned to High-A Bradenton.

-- Atlanta will start lefty Mike Minor (0-1, 10.38 ERA) against the Pirates on Wednesday in place of righty Tim Hudson, who is bothered by a sore back.

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