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Locke won't be used in short relief

Locke won't be used in short relief

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Locke won't be used in short relief
DETROIT -- Jeff Locke checked in from a day-long trip -- Lehigh Valley to Buffalo to Philadelphia to Detroit -- ready for duty he wasn't about to get.

The left-hander has spent almost his entire career, including the first seven weeks of this season, as a starter. But he was in the Pirates' bullpen for Sunday's series finale against the Tigers, recalled from Triple-A as Jason Grilli went on the Bereavement List.

"I can do two pitches or 50 pitches," said Locke, who had been scheduled to start Sunday for Indianapolis about the adjustment. "It wouldn't be any different than it is in Spring Training."

Manager Clint Hurdle had no visions of taking advantage of a second left-hander in his bullpen, alongside Tony Watson. Simply put, Locke will be on hand for a few days in case a Pittsburgh starter takes an early shower.

"He's here for length," Hurdle said. "He's not going to come into a situation against a left-handed hitter, unless we are ahead or behind by a lot and it's not a big deal. Wouldn't be fair to the kid. He's never done it, never been asked to do it, not gonna do it now."

As for picking up seventh- or eighth-inning duties until Grilli's expected return for Wednesday afternoon's game in PNC Park against the Mets, it sounds like Brad Lincoln is the man.

"[Jared] Hughes is an option. Watson is an option. We'll see how the game's playing out," Hurdle said. "Lincoln is an option. I've told Lincoln as much. We've got guys to fill in during Grilli's absence."

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