SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Giants manager Bruce Bochy estimated Friday that second baseman Marco Scutaro, who's enduring back pain, might be able to perform in a game by next Tuesday or Wednesday if he avoids physical setbacks before then.
Scutaro participated in on-field drills and batting practice for the third day in a row, prompting Bochy to set his tentative timetable.
Bochy emphasized that Scutaro must be able to swing relatively pain-free before he'll be allowed to play. Scutaro still appeared to be refraining from taking unbridled cuts in batting practice, in Bochy's view.
"We'd have to get to a point where he feels comfortable letting the bat go and not feel gingerly about it," Bochy said.
The Giants have a scheduled off-day Wednesday, so Scutaro would appear in a Minor League intrasquad game or exhibition if he opted to make his playing debut on that afternoon.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.