Prior to today's game, left-handed starting pitcher Wandy Rodriguez completed a simulated game that saw him throw five innings and 67 pitches. It's another step for the lefty, who hasn't pitched in a game since he left a start on June 5 with tightness in his forearm.
Rodriguez's initial diagnosis was simply inflammation in his elbow, which he has had before and spent time on the 15-day disabled list previously in his career. This injury was different though, as Rodriguez said earlier that he had arthritis in his pitching arm.
It seems the concerns with arthritis have subsided for the time being though, as Rodriguez looks like he's getting closer to a return. Prior to this simulated game, Hurdle said it would be an "indicator" about where the Pirates will go with him next. By all accounts, it seems his start is likely a good indicator.
Wandy Rodriguez appears to be closing in on a return to active duty, likely out of the Pirates' bullpen.
Nate covers the Pirates beat for Pirates Prospects and is the Publisher of Panther Digest, covering Pitt athletics. He also serves as About.com's College Basketball Expert. You can find Nate on Twitter at @NateBarnes_