SAN FRANCISCO -- Ending the uncertainty surrounding Pablo Sandoval's playing status, the Giants elected Saturday to assign the third baseman to the 15-day disabled list and replace him on the active roster by reinstating first baseman Aubrey Huff from the DL. Sandoval's DL stint is retroactive to Wednesday, one day after he strained his left hamstring while stretching for a throw as he played first base. Manager Bruce Bochy said he's "hopeful" that Sandoval, who's batting .299 with eight home runs and 33 RBIs in 62 games, can rejoin the lineup when he becomes eligible to do so on Aug. 9. "We have to be smart about it and make sure we don't rush him. Because that's going to be the urge," Bochy said.
Newly acquired infielder Marco Scutaro will serve as San Francisco's primary third baseman in Sandoval's absence. Since Sandoval's injury, the Giants had hoped that he would respond to intensive daily treatment. The need to maintain a full complement of position players forced them to abandon that plan.
"We don't want to go short here for an unknown number of days," Bochy said. "... The best thing to do is give [Sandoval] his full 15 days."Huff last appeared in a game for the Giants on June 10, three days before he sprained his right knee while trying to scale the dugout railing to join the on-field celebration following Matt Cain's perfect game. More recently, Huff was bothered by patellar tendinitis in the knee. But he has recovered enough to withstand the part-time use Bochy envisions for him -- pinch-hitting, entering games as part of a double-switch and starting occasionally. "He gives us an experienced bat coming off the bench," Bochy said of Huff, who's batting .155 with one home run and five RBIs in 32 games.