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Giants obtain Scutaro in trade with Rockies

SAN View Full Game Coverage FRANCISCO -- The Giants added the depth they sought Friday by acquiring infielder Marco Scutaro and cash from the Colorado Rockies for Triple-A infielder Charlie Culberson.

Scutaro, 36, has performed mostly at the middle infield spots during his 11 Major League seasons, though he's capable of playing third base and the corner outfield positions.

Giants general manager Brian Sabean emphasized that Scutaro did not represent a threat to the starting status of second baseman Ryan Theriot. But, Sabean said, "I think it's no secret that we're looking for depth and experience."

Citing Scutaro's versatility and savvy, Sabean added, "You need as many players as you can get who have experience to give the manager flexibility."

Another flurry of activity could occur Saturday. Sabean said that the Giants will announce whether to place third baseman Pablo Sandoval (strained left hamstring) on the 15-day disabled list. Sandoval missed his second game in a row Friday and might not be healing as fast as the Giants had hoped.

"He's making progress," manager Bruce Bochy said Saturday. "But we may have a [roster] move tomorrow."

Noting that the roster's in a "state of flux," Sabean added that first baseman Aubrey Huff could be activated Saturday. Huff, battling a troublesome right knee, hasn't played for the Giants since June 10 but is considered a potential source of power.

Besides being handy on defense, Scutaro bats right-handed, a commodity the Giants coveted. He hit .271 with four home runs and 30 RBIs in 94 games this season with the Rockies, who obtained him from Boston in a January trade. Scutaro has built a .270 career batting average with 72 homers and 434 RBIs while playing for the Mets (2002-03), A's (2004-07) and Blue Jays (2008-09), besides the Red Sox and Rockies.

For the short term, Scutaro could help fill the offensive void created by Sandoval's absence. Scutaro has reached base with a hit, a walk or being hit by a pitch in 44 of his last 50 games since May 28.

"He'll help them a lot," said Los Angeles second baseman Mark Ellis, a teammate of Scutaro's in Oakland. "He can play a lot of different positions and he gets big hits for you. He'll play a huge role; he always does. Every team he's on, he has a huge impact on that team."

Scutaro enjoyed his best all-around season with Toronto in 2009, when he hit .282 with 12 homers and 60 RBIs. He also thrived last year with Boston, compiling a career-high .299 average with seven homers and 54 RBIs.

Scutaro is earning $6 million this year and will become eligible for free agency after the season. The cash the Giants received will help ease the obligation of absorbing his salary.

Culberson, 23, hit .236 with 10 home runs and 53 RBIs in 90 games with Triple-A Fresno. He made his Major League debut during a brief May stint with the Giants and batted .136 (3-for-22) with one RBI. San Francisco selected him as a sandwich pick (51st overall) in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft.

San Francisco Giants, Marco Scutaro