Lewis progressing, but slowly

Lewis progressing, but slowly

SAN FRANCISCO -- Time is running out for Fred Lewis' sore left side to be healed by Opening Day, increasing the existing likelihood that the outfielder will begin the season on the 15-day disabled list.

Lewis, who initially reported feeling discomfort in his ribs last week, hit off a batting tee and ran Thursday. But he realizes that he needs much more activity than that to be game-ready.

"I need more at-bats right now, because timing-wise, sitting around not doing anything is not going to flip the switch," Lewis said.

Manager Bruce Bochy acknowledged that Lewis, 29, might have to be shelved when the Giants set their season-opening roster.

"Is there a possibility he could go on the DL? Sure," Bochy said. "We're not going to push him and get him out there and have any setbacks. He's doing better and I know there's not much time."

Lewis, who was competing for a reserve outfield spot, owns a .222 batting average in 14 exhibition games. But his extra-base prowess -- three homers and one triple -- has swelled his slugging percentage to .528.

"I was seeing the ball perfectly and all the way up until then I had done all that hard work," Lewis said. "Then all of a sudden it seemed like it faded away. Now I have to work my way from the bottom to the top."

If Lewis indeed starts the season on the disabled list, each of the other contenders for jobs as extra outfielders -- John Bowker, Andres Torres and Eugenio Velez -- likely would make the Opening Day roster.