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Cain's return leaves Giants with roster decision

Cain's return leaves Giants with roster decision

LOS ANGELES -- The simple act of reinstating right-hander Matt Cain from the disabled list to start Saturday afternoon against the Los Angeles Dodgers could be coupled with the not-so-simple act of trimming the roster.

Manager Bruce Bochy and the rest of San Francisco's braintrust must determine whether expanding the pitching staff to 13 and functioning with only four reserve position players is preferable to retaining the current five-man bench and 12-pitcher contingent.

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"We started talking about that a few days ago," Bochy said.

Bochy made that remark before first baseman Brandon Belt was sidelined for an estimated six weeks with a broken left thumb during Friday night's 3-1 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Though placing Belt on the disabled list could be coupled with Cain's return, Bochy cited the possibility of making multiple moves.

Regardless of how the Giants accommodate Cain's return, they'll again face the roster-balancing conundrum -- probably quite soon -- when left-hander David Huff returns from the DL. Huff's left quadriceps injury appeared to be a non-issue Thursday night when he pitched three shutout innings for Triple-A Fresno against El Paso.

Due to the recovery time Huff will need following Thursday's workload, the Giants probably won't make a roster move involving him for at least another couple of days. Bochy pointed out that Huff's ability to pitch multiple innings gives the Giants another viable long-relief option besides Yusmeiro Petit.

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.

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