ATLANTA -- The Giants changed the makeup of their bullpen Thursday by activating right-hander Todd Wellemeyer from the 15-day disabled list and designating right-hander Denny Bautista for assignment.
Wellemeyer, who began the season as San Francisco's No. 5 starter and held that role until he strained his right quadriceps on June 10 at Cincinnati, will be manager Bruce Bochy's leading option when he needs a long reliever -- which hasn't been very often.
"It's nice to have that luxury, though we've been doing a good job without given it," Bochy said.
Wellemeyer was 3-5 with a 5.52 ERA in 12 appearances (11 starts) before he was hurt. Rejoining the Giants at this juncture, as the postseason races begin to intensify, excites him.
"It's always more fun to pitch when there's something on the line," he said.
Bautista's statistics actually were decent -- most of them. He was 2-0 with a 3.74 ERA in 31 relief appearances. Opponents hit only .205 against him, and he accumulated 44 strikeouts in 33 2/3 innings. But he also issued 27 walks (four intentionally) and hit three batters, which prompted his dismissal.
Noting that a pitcher would inevitably have to be dropped from the roster upon Wellemeyer's return, Bochy said, "I think it's fair to say that of the pitchers we had, Bautista was struggling the most." But, Bochy added, "There were times he saved us."