Pirates don’t plan to activate Gerrit Cole from the DL when eligible

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Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune reports that Pirates manager Clint Hurdle isn’t anticipating Gerrit Cole returning from the disabled list when he is first eligible, on July 20. There is presently no timetable for his return, but the end of July or the first week of August would seem to be a realistic target barring any setbacks.

Cole, who shut the Phillies out on one hit over five innings on July 4, has been on the disabled list since with a strained lat in his right shoulder. Aside from the injury, the 23-year-old right-hander has had a good season, posting a 3.78 ERA with a 78/29 K/BB ratio in 85 2/3 innings over 14 starts.

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. saved by the ivy

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The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.

After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.

Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.