Alvarez unlikely to return before All-Star break

Alvarez unlikely to return before All-Star break

CLEVELAND - While Pedro Alvarez is making progress with his rehab work in Bradenton, Fla., the progress is coming so slowly that it appears unlikely that the third baseman will be back in Pittsburgh before the All-Star break.

Alvarez, who has been on the disabled list with a right quadriceps strain since May 21, is currently able to do only "limited" physical activity, manager Clint Hurdle said on Saturday. That limited activity includes nothing game-related.

Alvarez had played in a few extended spring training games earlier this month before he was forced out of a June 7 contest when his quad tightened up again. The third baseman has not played in a game since.

While the Pirates are not offering a guess as to how much longer Alvarez will be sidelined, it's safe to assume that he will need to participate in Florida camp games before going on a Minor League rehab assignment to get a bulk of at-bats. Working through those steps prior to the All-Star break -- which begins three weeks from Monday -- would seem to be a stretch.

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Josh Harrison and Brandon Wood will continue to split time at third in Alvarez's absence. Harrison, who carried an eight-game hitting streak into Saturday's game, appears to be in line to get the majority of those starts.