Elbow inflammation sends Cain to disabled list

Righty has battled bone chips or spurs; Kontos, Duvall recalled

Elbow inflammation sends Cain to disabled list

PHILADELPHIA -- Unsure when Matt Cain will pick up a baseball again, much less throw one in an actual game, the Giants placed the right-hander on the 15-day disabled list Monday with right elbow inflammation.

As expected, San Francisco also sent first baseman Brandon Belt to the seven-day DL with a concussion. To replace Cain and Belt on the active roster, the Giants recalled right-hander George Kontos and infielder Adam Duvall from Triple-A Fresno.

Right-hander Yusmeiro Petit was named to start Tuesday night against the Phillies in place of Cain, who has gone on the DL three times this season. But the previous two instances, to mend a cut finger and a hamstring injury, had nothing to do with the 29-year-old's throwing arm. Giants manager Bruce Bochy recently admitted that Cain, who has endured bone chips or spurs in his elbow for years, was experiencing discomfort in his arm.

Cain's move to the DL was retroactive to July 11, the maximum 10-day period. That made him eligible for activation Friday, but it's unlikely he'll return that early. Cain acknowledged that he doesn't know when he'll be cleared to throw.

"I'm not exactly sure, but I'm pretty optimistic that it shouldn't be too bad," he said.

Bochy indicated that he might know in a couple of days when Cain will test his arm.

Cain, the Giants' highest-paid player with a $20 million salary, owns a 2-7 record and a career-worst 4.18 ERA in 15 games after beginning the season as the Giants' No. 2 starter. He provided encouragement with his last outing July 9, when he surrendered two runs and five hits in six innings and earned the win in San Francisco's 5-2 victory over Oakland. But his arm hurt when he tried playing catch after the Giants reconvened in Miami following the All-Star break, even though he received a cortisone shot last weekend.

Cain sounded reluctant to consider surgery to remove the bone fragments or spurs in his arm, either immediately or in the offseason.

"If you can stay away from it, you try to do that the best you can," said Cain, who pitched at least 200 innings each season from 2007-12.

Belt's DL assignment was anticipated after he experienced dizziness, a headache and nausea after he was hit in the face by a thrown ball during the Giants' preceding series in Miami. His move to the DL was retroactive to Sunday.

This will be Kontos' third stint with the Giants this season. He compiled a 1-0 record with a 3.07 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 14 2/3 innings spanning 11 games in his previous stays with the Giants. The reliever was 2-3 with a 2.50 ERA, three saves and 49 strikeouts in 39 2/3 innings with Fresno. Bochy said Kontos will replace Petit as San Francisco's long reliever.

Duvall was thriving in the Pacific Coast League, batting .303 with a .361 on-base percentage and a .626 slugging percentage, garnished by 26 home runs and 79 RBIs. He hit .167 (3-for-18) with a homer and a double in five games during a recent promotion to the Giants.

Petit is 1-2 with a 5.81 ERA in his previous five starts this year for the Giants.

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.