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Worth noting

• A couple of injured players are on different comeback tracks. Starling Marte (DL, strained right oblique) increased his baseball activity Friday, including swings against live pitching. But Neil Walker (lower-back tightness) is still limited to getting treatment.

• The Bucs pulled into Milwaukee with a chance to toss a third consecutive shutout for the first time since the final three games of the 1976 season (over the Cardinals).

• Right-hander Rick VandenHurk has been named MVP of Triple-A Indianapolis, yet another hurler, lefty Jeff Locke, was chosen as the team's pitcher of the year. Also, Tim Wood was named reliever of the year, infielder Anderson Hernandez was selected defensive player of the year and outfielder Brandon Boggs was picked offensive player of the year.

• Joel Hanrahan continues to lead the NL with his 34 saves, remarkable in that he has had one save opportunity since Aug. 8. Putting to rest the argument that closers tend to be ineffective without save on the line, Hanrahan has had six straight scoreless outings in non-save situations.

• Saturday's game, a 7:05 p.m. ET start against the Brewers, will be the first of three Pirates broadcasts carried on KDKA-AM radio to avoid conflicts with Pitt football; the other games will be on Sept. 15 and Sept. 22.

The Last Word
"Yeah, I've got tickets with Jimmy (Trdinich) to see him on Oct. 16 at the Consol Center. I don't know -- I might be busy elsewhere."
-- Pirates boss Clint Hurdle, on his long-made plans to see The Boss, Bruce Springsteen, while MLB's 2012 postseason is in full swing. (Ed note: Hurdle could still make it; Oct. 16 will be an off-day between Games 2-3 of the NL Championship Series.)

• A couple of injured players are on different comeback tracks. Starling Marte (DL, strained right oblique) increased his baseball activity Friday, including swings against live pitching. But Neil Walker (lower-back tightness) is still limited to getting treatment.

• The Bucs pulled into Milwaukee with a chance to toss a third consecutive shutout for the first time since the final three games of the 1976 season (over the Cardinals).

• Right-hander Rick VandenHurk has been named MVP of Triple-A Indianapolis, yet another hurler, lefty Jeff Locke, was chosen as the team's pitcher of the year. Also, Tim Wood was named reliever of the year, infielder Anderson Hernandez was selected defensive player of the year and outfielder Brandon Boggs was picked offensive player of the year.

• Joel Hanrahan continues to lead the NL with his 34 saves, remarkable in that he has had one save opportunity since Aug. 8. Putting to rest the argument that closers tend to be ineffective without save on the line, Hanrahan has had six straight scoreless outings in non-save situations.

• Saturday's game, a 7:05 p.m. ET start against the Brewers, will be the first of three Pirates broadcasts carried on KDKA-AM radio to avoid conflicts with Pitt football; the other games will be on Sept. 15 and Sept. 22.

The Last Word
"Yeah, I've got tickets with Jimmy (Trdinich) to see him on Oct. 16 at the Consol Center. I don't know -- I might be busy elsewhere."
-- Pirates boss Clint Hurdle, on his long-made plans to see The Boss, Bruce Springsteen, while MLB's 2012 postseason is in full swing. (Ed note: Hurdle could still make it; Oct. 16 will be an off-day between Games 2-3 of the NL Championship Series.)