For the last couple of weeks, the Giants have known that they were going to have to make some difficult decisions on their rotation, and now seem to have their plan in place. Tim Lincecum made it somewhat easier, as an elbow injury will force him to the disabled list for the first time in his career.
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There doesn't seem to be anything seriously wrong with his elbow, as he was "diagnosed with a contusion" and not a fracture, which was initially feared. He was the most likely candidate to be removed from the rotation regardless of his injury status however, as he's continued to struggle, and recently turned in the worst start of his career. Former Giants' ace, Matt Cain, will step in and take his spot.
Cain made four rehab starts, one with AA and three with AAA. While the results were less than ideal, he's healthy and ready to go.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Mark down July 2 in Miami. It's setting up to be the Comeback Showdown between Jose Fernandez and Matt Cain.</p>— Andrew Baggarly (@extrabaggs) <a href="https://twitter.com/extrabaggs/status/613529288105537536">June 24, 2015</a></blockquote>
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While the club hasn't confirmed anything, Andrew Baggarly notes that the corresponding move for Jake Peavy's impending return (this Friday in Washington), will be to send veteran starter Tim Hudson to the "DL with one ailment or another".
The Giants also received good news on their All-Star outfielder Hunter Pence. He suffered a broken arm early in spring training, and while he returned for 15 games once it had healed, he's been sidelined since June 2nd with tendinitis in his left wrist. Earlier today however he was able to swing a bat, something that he hadn't done in "almost two weeks". There's still no timetable for his return however, which could extend through the break.
San Francisco's offense has performed remarkably well even without Pence, and since his most recent injury was viewed as a consequence of him trying to return as quickly as possible, they're going to be much more careful this time around.