Blake Snell

Snell nearing return to Giants rotation after impressive rehab starts

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SAN FRANCISCO – Giants manager Bob Melvin said Saturday that pitcher Blake Snell could rejoin the team and start Wednesday in Pittsburgh.

“We’re discussing that,” Melvin told reporters Saturday at Oracle Park before San Francisco’s game against the Colorado Rockies. “Depending on how he feels, there’s a good chance that that’s going to be the day.

The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner made his second of two rehab starts on Friday with Triple-A Sacramento and was dominant, throwing five no-hit innings with 10 strikeouts. Afterward, Snell said he has recovered from the groin injury that landed him on the injured list in late April.

A 14-game winner for the San Diego Padres in 2023, Snell signed a two-year, $62 million contract with the Giants that includes an opt-out after the 2024 season.

But the 31-year-old left-hander has yet to earn his first win in a Giants uniform. He is winless in three starts and has an 11.57 ERA.

Snell threw 46 pitches for Single-A San Jose a week ago then upped his pitch count to 60 on Friday. After each outing, Snell went to the bullpen for additional work before calling it a night.

“Seemed to be pretty good,” Melvin said. “It’s tough to get him enthusiastic about anything but he got what he needed. He actually pitched out of the stretch for a couple of hitters. Felt good about all his pitches, and obviously the results were good again.”

The Giants need a healthy Snell back in the rotation. They’ve won twice in nine games when Snell’s turn in the rotation has come up, including Friday’s victory over the Rockies.

“We’ve had a little trouble in that spot in particular,” Melvin said. “That’s one we were counting on, a guy who’s the current Cy Young Award recipient in the National League. A Blake Snell that’s pitching like that would be a huge boost for us.”

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