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Watson open to any role in Giants bullpen

MLB.com @sfgiantsbeat

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Giants reliever Tony Watson is ready for anything.

Being left-handed, he knows he'll be summoned under extremely specific circumstances to face left-handed hitters.

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Giants reliever Tony Watson is ready for anything.

Being left-handed, he knows he'll be summoned under extremely specific circumstances to face left-handed hitters.

Spring Training information

A versatile performer who's capable of neutralizing right-handed hitters, Watson could appear during the seventh or eighth inning in a setup role. He was especially effective in the eighth inning while dividing last year between the Pirates and Dodgers, striking out 15 and walking none in 16 appearances that spanned 13 1/3 innings.

And if closer Mark Melancon isn't available, Watson might be held back for a save situation.

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

"Whatever the game dictates," he said in the Giants' clubhouse at Scottsdale Stadium on Monday, when the team officially announced his two-year deal with an option for a third season.

Watson, 32, endured what for him was a rocky start to the 2017 season. He owned a 4.00 ERA through June, then recovered to compile a 2.64 ERA through the regular season's final three months. In the postseason, he recorded a 2.57 ERA in seven outings for the Dodgers.

"I just trusted my stuff and got back to who I am," Watson said.

Tweet from @TheCUTCH22: Great to be teaming it up with Watty(Tony Watson) again! Let���s get it bro! @SFGiants

To clear room for Watson on the 40-man roster, the Giants designated right-hander Joan Gregorio for assignment.

• In 2017, Giants outfielder Gorkys Hernandez hustled ceaselessly, strived for improvement and, for the first time in 12 professional seasons, stayed in the Majors all year.

The Giants rewarded Hernandez with more difficult competition. San Francisco has six outfielders in camp besides Hernandez and projected starters Hunter Pence, Austin Jackson and Andrew McCutchen.

"We have a much better outfield," Hernandez said. "All I can do is try to compete. I'll be here for everything [manager Bruce] Bochy needs."

Hernandez, who underwent surgery to remove a hamate bone from his left hand last October, has an edge. He's one of the few extra outfielders -- Gregor Blanco is another -- who can play center field without fuss.

Video: SF@COL: Hernandez scores two with a single to left

• The general feeling around the Giants is that the orange-skulled caps they're using for Spring Training are less than flattering. As Bochy related, several players asked each other, "Are we really wearing these?" Referring to his unusually large hat size of 8 1/8, Bochy charitably said, "If I get a hat that fits, that works for me."

Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

San Francisco Giants, Gorkys Hernandez, Tony Watson