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Cervelli back on 7-day concussion DL

Pirates catcher reported to PNC Park on Saturday 'not feeling right'
MLB.com @adamdberry

PITTSBURGH -- Only six days after his return from the disabled list, Francisco Cervelli is back on the shelf.

Just before Saturday's doubleheader against the Brewers at PNC Park, the Pirates placed Cervelli on the seven-day disabled list due to post-concussive symptoms. The Bucs recalled catcher Jacob Stallings from Triple-A Indianapolis to take Cervelli's spot on the roster.

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PITTSBURGH -- Only six days after his return from the disabled list, Francisco Cervelli is back on the shelf.

Just before Saturday's doubleheader against the Brewers at PNC Park, the Pirates placed Cervelli on the seven-day disabled list due to post-concussive symptoms. The Bucs recalled catcher Jacob Stallings from Triple-A Indianapolis to take Cervelli's spot on the roster.

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Cervelli reported to PNC Park on Saturday "not feeling right," Pirates director of sports medicine Todd Tomczyk said, which initiated a series of tests. He was seen by Pittsburgh's medical staff, club doctors and Dr. James Valeriano, the chairperson of the department of neurology for the Allegheny Health Network.

The Pirates received a recommendation that Cervelli not play on Saturday or Sunday due to his post-concussion symptoms. With the four-day All-Star break starting on Monday, Pittsburgh decided to place Cervelli on the disabled list.

Cervelli was sidelined by a concussion for more than two weeks. He took a foul tip off the left side of his face mask on June 9 at Wrigley Field, did not return until June 13, went through extensive testing and returned to play six full games. He reported a recurrence of concussion symptoms after the Pirates' game on June 21. He was placed on the disabled list the following day.

Cervelli recovered to the point that he began a Minor League rehab assignment on July 5. A week ago, he returned to PNC Park and declared that he was "better" and "ready to play some baseball and play hard and keep doing what I was doing." He came off the disabled list and started on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

"He had four games, and every game, he had a hit off the facemask," Tomczyk said. "The in-game exams were normal. The postgame exams were normal. The next day's exams were normal, with the exception of this morning."

Five minutes before the first pitch of Saturday's first game, the Pirates announced that Cervelli was returning to the disabled list. Stallings was immediately activated, present in Pittsburgh's dugout for Game 1 and behind the plate to catch starter Clay Holmes in Game 2.

Cervelli, 32, has been fielding ground balls at first base recently, looking for a way to keep his bat in the lineup even when he's not behind the plate. Tomczyk said the Pirates have not yet received any sort of recommendation that Cervelli needs to change positions on a full-time basis.

"We're talking about quality of life here. We're treating human beings here," Tomczyk said. "We're all concerned about that and any player who gets blows to the head. That is of concern, and that is something there's internal discussions about."

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

Pittsburgh Pirates, Francisco Cervelli