SF Giants’ McGee, Ruf and Cueto are about to return to the list
SAN FRANCISCO – A diagnosis of a thumb fracture that could cost Brandon Bilt a chance to play for the Giants once again overshadowed Positive Developments Director Gabi Kapler, who shared him on Tuesday.
The Giants put Belt on the injured list for 10 days Tuesday with an injury that could force him to miss most or all of the post-season, but the team could have some important reinforcements to join the roster in the coming days.
Closer Jake McGee, starters Johnny Cueto and right-handed batsman Darin Ruf are making good progress as they rehab from the various injuries that propelled the trio to the injured list in September.
Rove, who missed last week due to a mild tilt strain, could be the first member of the group to return as Kapler said he is “optimistic” Rove will be in the Giants’ starting lineup on Thursday when the club faces Arizona-hander left-hander Madison Baumgarner.
Rove has been one of the Giants’ top offensive players this season and is expected to play a key role in replacing Bale as he will likely run into near the top of the lineup against left-handed bowlers. When Giants Use LaMonte Wade Jr. On first base as they plan to do against right-handed starters, Ruff will be ready to put pressure on Wade in late strikes against left-handers and then take his place in defense.
Kapler said McGee, who also deals with a tilted strain, will throw a canoe on Wednesday at Oracle Park, meaning the giants closest off the injured list are likely to return this weekend when the club hosts Padres.
“At the same time, swerves are really tough and if you’re putting players with slash injuries, either while they’re trying to get past them or prematurely, they’re not good,” Kapler said. “They are not good hitters and they are not good shooters. With Jake, we want to ensure not only that he is safe, but that he will also be the efficient, strong, strong, durable version of himself.”
Cuito, who missed all of September due to a strain in his right elbow, started his rehab with Triple-A Sacramento on Thursday and threw 40 throws over the 1st and 3rd innings. The veteran right-hander could return at any time during the house, but the Giants have not made a decision on when he might be activated from the injured list.
“I think it’s very close to activation if that makes the most sense for the club,” Kapler said. “He had a really good gaming session, especially the last two pitches he’s starting to get into a little bit and sort of typical, professional and methodical Johnny Bullpen, but it ended with a bit of a thunder.”
The Giants are excited to see how Quito performs against the major league competitions before the playoffs begin, but with 2.0 games ahead in the Western National League with six games left to play, the club also doesn’t want to jeopardize their chances of winning. Split by resorting to the initiating bowler which may be ineffective.
The ideal scenario for the Giants to activate Quito would happen if the club were able to clinch the division before the end of the regular season on Sunday against Padres. The Giants can then test Cueto for their post-season roster either in the starting role or use him out of the game in a multi-role mission behind Logan Webb, who is currently lined up to start.