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Pence (thumb) resumes rehab assignment

Veteran outfielder has been on the disabled list since April 20
Special to MLB.com

PITTSBURGH -- The battered Giants got some encouraging news on Saturday when outfielder Hunter Pence resumed his rehab assignment with Triple-A Sacramento.

The 35-year-old veteran went on the 10-day disabled list with a sprained right thumb on April 20 after sustaining the injury on April 3. He experienced recurring soreness while rehabbing with Sacramento and was temporarily sidelined last week.

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PITTSBURGH -- The battered Giants got some encouraging news on Saturday when outfielder Hunter Pence resumed his rehab assignment with Triple-A Sacramento.

The 35-year-old veteran went on the 10-day disabled list with a sprained right thumb on April 20 after sustaining the injury on April 3. He experienced recurring soreness while rehabbing with Sacramento and was temporarily sidelined last week.

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Asked if Pence might rejoin the big league club during its seven-game homestand that starts Monday, manager Bruce Bochy said, "I guess there's a chance. We'll see how this goes -- how it feels, his thumb, how he swings the bat, where his timing is and those things. We'll see how many at-bats he needs."

Video: SF@LAD: Pence charges in and slides for a nice grab

Bochy said Pence's spirits have been "good" throughout the ordeal.

"He's been upbeat," Bochy said. "He's doing fine mentally through all of this. I just think he's ready to get back on the field and get back to playing baseball."

Pence is among a large assemblage of key sidelined players. Pitchers Madison Bumgarner, Johnny Cueto and Mark Melancon, second baseman Joe Panik and outfielder Mac Williamson all are on the 10- or 60-day disabled list.

Video: High Heat: Cueto avoids elbow surgery for now

Maybe. Maybe not.
Like several clubs, the Giants carry 13 pitchers. With off-days looming on May 21 and May 24, Bochy was asked if he is considering reducing the number to 12 and adding a position player at some point.

"Right now I would say no," he said. "I think it would be important for us to carry the extra pitcher, so we don't overuse anybody. But we'll wait, we'll see where we're at when these off-days come. We might be able to get by for a few days with an extra player."

Bob Cohn is a contributor to MLB.com based in Pittsburgh.

San Francisco Giants