Neil Walker is set to come off the disabled list at some point during an interleague series with the Tampa Bay Rays that starts Monday, and a tough roster move will have to be made as a result.
Walker has been rehabbing with Class-A Bradenton in preparation for the series. He was placed on the disabled list following a June 9 appendectomy, and is eligible to be activated Tuesday.
The move will push Josh Harrison to the bench — although with his hot hitting, he is sure to find time in the lineup filling in for Walker, Pedro Alvarez, and the starting outfield on scheduled days off.
Once the Pittsburgh-born second baseman is activated, the Pirates will be left with a difficult choice. They will have to send someone packing from the roster, and the two most likely candidates are Jose Tabata, who is hitting for a high average with no power, or Travis Snider, who has done well off the bench, although he has performed poorly in extended playing time. Nevertheless, the Pirates will have to part with a productive bench player.
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