Alex Cobb

Cobb faces ‘baby setback' in bid to make quick Giants return

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SAN FRANCISCO — When it became clear that Alex Cobb was weeks ahead of schedule in his recovery from offseason hip surgery, he started to have some fun with staff ace Logan Webb. Cobb told Webb that if he made it back in time for Opening Day, he would get that start and bump Webb to the second slot in the rotation.

"I tried, I tried," Cobb said Friday, smiling. "I came up short. That's alright. Next year ..."

Cobb nearly made it, shocking the new staff, but he now will be on a timeline closer to the original one. He said Friday morning that he had a “baby setback” when he felt elbow soreness while throwing earlier this week. 

An MRI came back clean and the Giants are officially calling it a right flexor strain. Cobb said he will see Dr. Ken Akizuki, the team’s orthopedist, but he’s not too concerned. He'll take anti-inflammatories and expects to resume a throwing progression next week.

"I think we'll ramp up pretty quickly but I still need to go see the doctor and (trainer Dave Groeschner) and see what kind of plan we put in place," he said. 

Cobb’s hip is doing well, and he would have started a rehab assignment in the minors without the setback. The Giants are now aiming for a May return for Cobb, who is eligible to come off the IL on Tuesday. 

Instead, it will be just Blake Snell returning to the rotation this month. Keaton Winn will remain in the fifth rotation spot, and Cobb said he loved the way Winn threw in his debut. The Giants have plenty of rotation depth, making it a bit easier for them to take it slow with Cobb. 

"There's no reason to rush. It doesn't benefit anybody if you come back and get hurt," Cobb said. "Watching the team from afar on TV, it's just a fun team. I know we didn't do what we wanted to in L.A. but it was just good baseball, it was fun baseball to watch. We came up short. What a lineup the Dodgers have, and I thought the guys battled really well.

"Keaton's stuff looked fantastic that day. He's throwing his slider more, the split in and out of the zone, 98 at the top of the zone. You feel like the team is in good hands with the guys we have right now."

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