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Pirates Vs. Phillies: Jeff Karstens To Return In First Game Of Series

One of the Pirates' top performers in 2011 will finally return from the disabled list Monday.

PITTSBURGH - JUNE 01:  Jeff Karstens #27 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches against the Chicago Cubs during the game on June 1, 2010 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH - JUNE 01: Jeff Karstens #27 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches against the Chicago Cubs during the game on June 1, 2010 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
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Pirates starter Jeff Karstens (shoulder) will return from a long stint on the disabled list to face the Phillies in the first matchup of a four-game series on Monday.

Hurdle said Karstens will start Monday. Lincoln to Pen.

Brad Lincoln leaves the rotation despite a very good start against the Tigers this weekend. The Pirates likely feel that he's better-suited to bullpen work in the long run. Kevin Correia, who also pitched well against Detroit this weekend, remains in the rotation. The Pirates likely will remove a reliever, perhaps the recently-recalled Bryan Morris, from the roster in time for Karstens to make his start.

Erik Bedard was scheduled to start on Monday, so it appears he, and perhaps the rest of the rotation, will get an extra day of rest. (Apologies for all the speculation here; we'll know more when a full-length report leaks out.) Joe Blanton and Vance Worley are scheduled to start the first two games of the series for the Phils.

For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.