Knudson, Boscan sent to Minor League camp

Knudson, Boscan sent to Minor League camp

SARASOTA, Fla. -- The Pirates trimmed their Spring Training roster by two on Thursday morning, reassigning right-handers Guido Knudson and Wilfredo Boscan to Minor League camp.

With a week remaining, Pittsburgh has 43 players in Major League camp.

Knudson allowed five runs on 12 hits, including three home runs, and struck out three over 6 1/3 innings this spring. The Pirates claimed the 26-year-old off waivers from the Tigers in November, released him in January and re-signed him to a Minor League deal about a week later.

Pirates rally late but fall to O's, 6-5

Knudson made his Major League debut for the Tigers last season, giving up 10 runs on 13 hits and five homers in five innings. He should begin the season in the Triple-A Indianapolis bullpen.

Boscan, one of the Pirates' Triple-A depth starters, as he was last season, pitched 3 1/3 innings over three Grapefruit League appearances. His first two outings were scoreless, then he allowed eight runs on seven hits while recording one out against the Phillies on Friday.

Boscan, 26, went 10-3 with a 3.07 ERA in 25 games for Indianapolis last year.

Around the horn

• Third baseman Jason Rogers was scratched from the Pirates' lineup Thursday due to an illness, the club announced. He was sent back to McKechnie Field to be examined by the team's doctors.

Minor League third baseman Chase Simpson replaced Rogers in the starting lineup against the Orioles at Ed Smith Stadium.

• First baseman/outfielder Michael Morse came out of the game in the middle of the fourth inning for precautionary reasons. Morse felt some discomfort in his hamstring while running to second base on Danny Ortiz's double-play grounder in the top half of the inning but said it was nothing serious.

• Matt Joyce and Cole Figueroa, both vying for a spot on the Opening Day bench, had good days at the plate. Joyce went 2-for-4 with his second homer in his last four games, drove in two runs and stole a base.

"Matt's been getting some traction at the plate for the past week," manager Clint Hurdle said. "Seems to be getting off some good swings and squaring up the ball, taking his walks when they're there. He's starting to find his rhythm."

Figueroa, starting at shortstop, went 2-for-5 with a double, a run and a steal.

"He's pretty much as advertised. He's a backyard baseball player," Hurdle said. "Pays attention. Consistent defender. Works at-bats. Moves the ball around. He's going to find a way to beat you."

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.