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Bucs place Bastardo on DL, recall Barbato

Struggling left-hander put on shelf with left quad strain
MLB.com

PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates placed struggling left-hander Antonio Bastardo on the 10-day disabled list on Tuesday and recalled right-hander Johnny Barbato from Triple-A Indianapolis only eight days after acquiring him from the Yankees.

Bastardo has been the weak link in Pittsburgh's bullpen this season, allowing 12 runs on 15 hits and seven walks over six outings. Bastardo was sent to the disabled list with a left quad strain, which he said came about during his appearance in the Pirates' 14-3 loss to the Cubs on Monday at PNC Park.

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PITTSBURGH -- The Pirates placed struggling left-hander Antonio Bastardo on the 10-day disabled list on Tuesday and recalled right-hander Johnny Barbato from Triple-A Indianapolis only eight days after acquiring him from the Yankees.

Bastardo has been the weak link in Pittsburgh's bullpen this season, allowing 12 runs on 15 hits and seven walks over six outings. Bastardo was sent to the disabled list with a left quad strain, which he said came about during his appearance in the Pirates' 14-3 loss to the Cubs on Monday at PNC Park.

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Rather than ask to be removed from the game, Bastardo said he wanted to finish the inning. He mentioned his discomfort after the game, he said.

"I was not trying to leave the game because of that. Just try to stay in there and complete my inning. The team needs it," Bastardo said. "I am an athlete, so I find a way to not push too hard and try to make the pitches."

The time down should serve Bastardo well. The 31-year-old's velocity has dipped this season, and he's been working to refine his mechanics. Before Monday's game, he was throwing on flat ground, searching with pitching coach Ray Searage for proper extension and the correct release point.

Video: CHC@PIT: Szczur comes home on a wild pitch

"I'm going to take my time to get my body better and to get healthy and work on my stuff for my throwing program and all that stuff," Bastardo said.

To take Bastardo's spot, Pittsburgh recalled the 24-year-old Barbato. The right-hander had thrown three scoreless innings since joining the Pirates' organization on April 17 in exchange for cash considerations. He had been designated for assignment by the Yankees. Now, he's back in the Majors as a multiple-inning relief option.

"You get DFA'd, you're thinking about, 'Oh man, what's going to happen?'" Barbato said after finding his locker in the Pirates' clubhouse. "A week later, I'm in the big leagues. Definitely been a whirlwind, for sure."

Barbato found out he would be called up around 11:30 p.m. ET on Monday night. He made his Major League debut last season, going 1-2 with a 7.62 ERA in 13 innings for the Yankees.

Video: NYY@TOR: Barbato gets out of bases-loaded jam

"There's some history of us being able to help some people from the Yankees out when they've come across," manager Clint Hurdle said.

Around the horn

• Speaking at PNC Park on Tuesday, MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said outfielder Starling Marte did not appeal his 80-game suspension following a positive test for Nandrolone, a performance-enhancing substance.

"I do not see it as a program failure that we have positive tests," Manfred said. "Occasionally, athletes are going to make a bad decision. I think we have a program in place that is the best at catching them if they make that decision."

• Manfred said Major League Baseball is "monitoring" but not actively involved in third baseman Jung Ho Kang's visa application process. Kang remains in South Korea, awaiting an appeals hearing on May 25 following a suspended jail sentence for his third DUI arrest since 2009.

• Reliever Dovydas Neverauskas kept two baseballs (his first pitch and first strikeout) and the lineup card from his debut Monday night. He said the memorabilia will go in his "future house." Manfred was pleased to see Neverauskas become the first Lithuanian-born player to reach the Majors.

"I think our ability to attract great athletes from other countries promotes diversity in the game," Manfred said. "When you have one of your athletes playing, that's the best way to grow the game in that foreign country."

Adam Berry has covered the Pirates for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, read his blog and listen to his podcast.

Pittsburgh Pirates, Antonio Bastardo