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Alvarez expects to pitch Sunday; Salty cleared to return to baseball activities; Furcal progressing

ARLINGTON, TEX. -- Henderson Alvarez said his hip feels fine and if all goes well in his next bullpen session, manager Mike Redmond said, the Marlins' best starting pitcher should be in line to make his next start Sunday at home against the Pirates.

On Sunday, Alvarez landed awkwardly and left the game in the sixth inning after leaping high in the air to take a flip toss from first baseman Garrett Jones while covering the bag. The bullpen ended up yielding two inherited runs and they were credited to Alvarez, ending his string of 26 consecutive scoreless innings, third-longest in Marlins history. 

Alvarez said Tuesday he was pretty bummed his scoreless innings streak came to an end, and that he could have kept on pitching had the Marlins and Redmond not decided to take precautionary measures.

"Everything was fine. I was good. The only thing is when I fell it looked ugly. But I could have kept pitching," Alvarez said. "I didn't have anything wrong with my body. I wanted to keep pitching. It bothered me they took me out of the game, especially a game I was pitching so well in. I could have continued. But those are things that happen in baseball. I've got to let it go. It's over now. I have to keep looking forward."

Although the Marlins entertained the idea of starting Nathan Eovaldi against the Rangers to wrap up the quick two-game set (his wife is expecting to have their first child on Sunday), the rotation will stay in order, Redmond said, and right-hander Jacob Turner will start opposite Rangers ace Yu Darvish Wednesday. Eovaldi will pitch Friday at home against the Pirates.

Redmond stopped short of saying who was going to start for the Marlins Saturday -- a possible landing spot for top prospect Andrew Heaney. If Heaney isn't called up to start then, left-hander Randy Wolf will stay in his scheduled spot. 

SALTY BEGINS BASEBALL ACTIVITIES

Catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, on the disabled list with concussion-like symptoms since June 1, began participating in baseball activities on Tuesday in Jupiter. Redmond said he took 25 swings from both the left and right side, played catch and rode bike.

The Marlins don't have a time frame as to when they expect Saltalamacchia to return from the disabled list, Redmond said. He also expects the catcher to play in a few rehab games before returning. "He'll be on a day-to-day progression just to make sure he doesn't have any symptoms come back," Redmond said.

> It might not be long before the Marlins finally get to see veteran second baseman Rafael Furcal, who on Monday had his most productive rehab game yet for Double A Jacksonville. Furcal, 36, went 3-for-5, scored two runs and stole a base. He's now 6-for-20 (.300) with four runs scored and four stolen bases since his latest return to action on June 5th. Redmond said Furcal will play the next couple days in Single A Jupiter for logistical reasons. 

"[Christian Yelich] has done a good job, but when that day comes for Furcal it will be exciting to see what he can do and get him out there and hopefully he’ll be a spark for us," Redmond said. "I don’t know when that day is coming, but it is probably coming soon. It was coming soon about a month ago too and it didn’t. I think it's safe to say coming soon."

TUESDAY'S LINEUPS

> Marlins (33-30): 1. Christian Yelich LF, 2. Ed Lucas 2B, 3. Giancarlo Stanton RF, 4. Casey McGehee 3B, 5. Garrett Jones 1B, 6. Marcell Ozuna CF, 7. Justin Bour DH, 8. Jeff Mathis C, 9. Adeiny Hechavarria SS. RHP Tom Koehler.

> Rangers (31-33): 1. Michael Choice LF, 2. Elvis Andrus SS, 3. Shin-Soo Choo DH, 4. Adrian Beltre 3B, 5. Alex Rios RF, 6. Brad Snyder 1B, 7. Robinson Chirinos C, 8. Leonys Martin CF, 9. Rougned Odor 2B. RHP Colby Lewis

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