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Notebook: Rain keeps Wilson out

Joe Rutter
| Wednesday, May 17, 2006

If not for the adverse weather conditions Tuesday, shortstop Jack Wilson might have returned to the Pirates' starting lineup. Persistent rain, however, wiped out his scheduled running session. Wilson, who hasn't started since May 6 because of a hamstring strain, is hopeful he can play tonight against the Cincinnati Reds. Wilson had been scheduled to test his hamstring before last night's game by running the bases and taking ground balls. Had he completed those exercises, Wilson was optimistic he'd have started.

"I would have told them I was ready," Wilson said. "It's unfortunate we had the rain, because it might have been the day I got back out there."

Manager Jim Tracy confirmed that, weather permitting, Wilson could return today or Thursday.

  • Injured first baseman Sean Casey took batting practice Monday, with coach Jim Colborn supplying the pitching. Casey, who is on the disabled list with bone fractures in his lower back, also took ground balls. No timetable has been set for Casey beginning an injury rehab assignment, but the Pirates are encouraged by his progress.

    "He's definitely moving in the right direction," Tracy said.

  • Third baseman Joe Randa is eligible to be activated from the disabled list today, but the bone contusion in his right foot will keep him sidelined for the immediate future. Randa had his foot re-examined yesterday.

    "He's progressing in small increments and seems to be getting a little bit better," Tracy said.

  • Catcher Ryan Doumit had his injured hamstring re-examined yesterday. Because his condition had not significantly improved, he remains confined to pinch-hitting duty.

  • Catcher Neil Walker, the team's first-round draft pick in 2004, is expected to make his season debut for Single-A Lynchburg on Friday. Walker had surgery on his left wrist Dec. 2 and has spent the first six weeks of the season rehabbing in extended spring training. In the interim, Walker will alternate between catching and designated hitter.

  • Former Pirates left-hander Dave Williams has been moved up in the Reds' rotation and will start Thursday afternoon in the series finale. Williams (2-3, 6.32 ERA) will replace Elizardo Ramirez.

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