Hernandez didn't start on Tuesday but could on Wednesday against Astros left-hander Dallas Keuchel at PNC Park. Hernandez batted .321 against lefties at Indianapolis.
"We're probably going to find a way in the lineup against some left-handed pitching," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "He's a wonderful defender to have on the club. And actually, we got him on the bases a few times and he had some really clean breaks and reads, so he'll help there. ... He made two highlight plays while he was here. Just spectacular. Arguably still probably our best defender."
While with the Pirates from May 18-June 5, Hernandez went 2-for-10 with two RBIs in nine games. He came into Tuesday's 8-7 walk-off win in the fifth inning as an injury replacement for left fielder Alex Presley and went 0-for-2.
Tabata has been a mainstay in the Pirates' outfield in the last three years before struggling to a .230 average with a .295 on-base percentage in 72 games this season. His uneven baserunning was one sign of his cautious play. He has been caught stealing nine times, the most in the Majors, while only stealing eight bases.
Keuchel will make his fourth career start for the Astros, having posted a 1.35 ERA in his first 20 innings. Two starts ago, he gave up one run in a complete game. He's given up one earned run in each of his three outings.
"I'm just going to try to continue it," Keuchel said. "Obviously, it's the Fourth of July, so there will be probably a big crowd and it will be nice to win there so we can enjoy the fireworks show afterwards."
Temperatures for the matinee could reach the low 90s, but Keuchel is pretty used to that, having made 13 starts at Triple-A Oklahoma City before heading to Houston.
"I've done it before," Keuchel said. "I sweat a lot, but that won't be a factor with some Dri Grip on. I'm just going to go out and try to pitch my game."
Pirates: Correia on the mound
After struggling in his last start, Kevin Correia will start for the Pirates on Tuesday. He gave up five runs in five innings against the Cardinals on June 29, earning a win after the Pirates scored 14 runs.
He gave up four runs in the third inning but shut the Cardinals out in the fourth and fifth innings.
"He competes," said Pirates manager Clint Hurdle after the start. "Sometimes it's kind of funny how games work out and pitchers get wins. But there's no denying he went out there, that big inning for him was the [fourth] inning to put a zero out on the board, and he was able to do that."
Correia has thrown more than five innings in each of his last eight starts but hasn't made it to the seventh inning in any of them.
Astros: Three international players sign
Outfielder Luis Payano, shortstop Kristian Trompiz and catcher Victor Tavarez agreed to terms with the Astros on Tuesday. Terms were not disclosed.
"The Astros have actively scouted this year's international prospect class," general manager Jeff Luhnow said. "These players are a good start and a continuation of our attempts to aggregate the best young talent in baseball."
The signings came on the second day of the international signing period. Payano, 16, and Tavarez, 17, are both from the Dominican Republic. Trompiz, 16, is from Venezuela.
All three players will report to the Astros' academy in the Dominican Republic.
The Pirates have homered in 11 straight games. The Pirates' last streak of 11 games or more was in 1994, when they went deep in 13 straight games.
The Astros had scored six total earned runs against the Pirates in their first four games this season. They scored six off A.J. Burnett on Monday.
After a seven-run rally in the ninth inning, the Tri-City ValleyCats, the Astros' Single A Short Season affiliate, won their 11th straight game on Tuesday, 7-2. The ValleyCats are 13-3 and in first place in the New York-Penn League.