WASHINGTON — The Pirates placed National League saves leader Jason Grilli on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right forearm.
Grilli, who left Monday night’s game at Washington in the ninth inning with discomfort in his forearm, traveled to Pittsburgh Tuesday and will be examined by team doctors.
“The biggest thing we’ve got to do is get Jason back to Pittsburgh and be seen by our doctors and get a more thorough evaluation,” Pittsburgh general manager Neal Huntington said. “The initial read was he’s going to be down at least seven to 10 days so the DL becomes a no-brainer at that point, but the rest is speculative and anything else at this point would be purely that.”
The All-Star right-hander is 0-1 with a 2.34 ERA and 30 saves.
Manager Clint Hurdle said Mark Melancon (2-1, 0.97, two saves) will assume the closer’s role in Grilli’s absence. Melancon recorded the final three outs in Tuesday’s 5-1 win over the Nationals.
“I think it’s going to be somewhat of a seamless transition. We can’t replace Jason but we are going to move Mark to the closer spot,” Hurdle said.
To take Grilli’s spot on the active roster, the Pirates recalled right hander Vic Black from Triple-A Indianapolis, where he’s 1-2 with 15 saves and a 2.31 ERA.