Giants carry 12 pitchers as they set playoff roster
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FRANCISCO -- The Giants released their 25-man postseason roster Thursday, electing to go with 12 pitchers and 13 position players.
George Kontos and Guillermo Mota made the cut to round out the Giants bullpen, and Aubrey Huff was named to the roster to give the Giants a left-handed bat off the bench.
Manager Bruce Bochy had previously said that all five starting pitchers would be on the postseason roster -- though one would be moved to the bullpen, and that the bullpen would have a left-handed trio in Javier Lopez, Jeremy Affeldt and Jose Mijares. In addition to late-inning specialists Sergio Romo and Santiago Casilla, the Giants likely were left to decide between Kontos and Mota if the club were to take 11 pitchers, as it did in its 2010 World Series run.
The decision to take both Kontos and Mota may have cost Emmanuel Burriss, Justin Christian or Francisco Peguero a spot. The Giants will have limited speed options when it comes to pinch-running, with the only viable options being Ryan Theriot or Joaquin Arias, both valuable pinch-hitting options as well.
Bochy had said that the coaches had a good understanding of how they wanted the roster to look, but that they would have one final discussion following the team's workout at AT&T Park on Friday.
Xavier Nady provides the only other regular outfield option off the bench, with Bochy saying that Gregor Blanco will start in left alongside Angel Pagan and Hunter Pence, though Brandon Belt had appeared in left field toward the end of the season. Hector Sanchez will be Buster Posey's sole backup behind the plate, with Pablo Sandoval being able to fill in on emergency situations.
The rookie Kontos is the only first-year pitcher on the roster, having gotten the call by going 2-1 with a 2.47 ERA in 44 relief appearances this season after being acquired from the Yankees at the end of Spring Training for catcher Chris Stewart.
After playing a pivotal role in the team's historic 2010 postseason run, Huff was added to the roster after hitting .192 this season in 78 at-bats. But after battling injuries and setbacks for most of the season, Huff showed his value as a left-handed pinch-hitter in September, going 5-for-16 with three walks.
Clay Hensley was one of the notable Giants left off the roster despite tallying 60 appearances this season, the fifth-most on the team. A solid first-half of the season was derailed by his second-half struggles, having gone 1-2 with a 6.27 ERA.