Reliever Smith aggravates elbow; opener in doubt

Lefty heads for MRI on throwing arm, which was inflamed earlier this spring

Reliever Smith aggravates elbow; opener in doubt

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Giants reliever Will Smith left Monday's 3-2 win over the White Sox in the eighth inning after he sustained a possible recurrence of the inflammation in his left (throwing) elbow that has limited him to two appearances during Cactus League play.

Smith entered the game in the eighth and coaxed two groundouts after Adam Engel hit a leadoff single that deflected off the reliever's throwing hand. But Smith called for the athletic training staff while pitching to Danny Hayes and walked off the mound. He was scheduled to undergo an MRI exam later Monday to determine the extent of the injury.

Trying to remain hopeful, Smith called his departure from the game a "precaution." Manager Bruce Bochy was not as upbeat.

"We're looking at some time [for being sidelined]," Bochy said.

Should Smith open the season on the disabled list, San Francisco's other left-handers obviously would move up in the bullpen pecking order. Steven Okert, who has allowed one unearned run in seven outings, almost surely would make the Opening Day roster. Josh Osich, who walked three batters in the sixth inning and allowed a run, still would receive strong consideration. So would Ty Blach, who could be used in multiple roles, including long relief.

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. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.