Mac Williamson begins rehab assignment as roster dilemma looms


SAN FRANCISCO — Even with two off days next week, the Giants do not plan to add a position player and go back to a 12-man pitching staff. Having a DH in Houston will allow Bruce Bochy to get away from double-switching for a pair of games. 

But after that it’s back to the National League, and it could get awkward for the team’s decision-makers. Mac Williamson started a rehab assignment Friday night with Triple-A Sacramento, and Hunter Pence is already there, working to learn a new swing that he learned from Williamson’s offseason instructor. 

Williamson will get at least a week to try and return to the swing that made him a force in the minors and the big league team’s most dangerous hitter for a bit before a concussion. That could put him on a somewhat similar timetable to Pence, who has 14 days remaining on his rehab assignment. 

It’s hard to see the Giants having both on their roster given the current configuration. So do they cut one of the current four big league outfielders? There has been no indication that a move is anywhere close. Do they give Pence a shot despite the fact that Williamson has been better this season, or do they turn to Williamson and cut ties with Pence?

Sometimes these decisions make themselves. But barring another injury, the Giants will have to make a choice pretty soon. 

—- Joe Panik is doing so well that he could start a rehab assignment when the Giants go to Coors Field at the end of this month. Alen Hanson is also doing well, and could be ready when his 10 days on the DL are up. If you’re Kelby Tomlinson, this would be a good time to get hot. 

—- Down in Triple-A, Chris Shaw was put on the DL with a left groin strain. 

—- Brandon Belt is off Friday night because he banged his knee up sliding into second base the other day. It’s not considered serious. Elsewhere in Belt news, he received a call from MLB’s Joe Torre regarding his comments the other day. No word on whether Torre admitted the umpires keep making bad calls. 

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