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SF Giants could have ‘full’ roster soon with two players nearing return

SF Giants could have ‘full’ roster soon with two players nearing return

SAN FRANCISCO – Catcher Patrick Bailey is expected to play Wednesday when the Giants wrap up a three-game series with the Cleveland Guardians and outfielder Michael Conforto might return soon after, giving manager Gabe Kapler hope that he can have a full roster at his disposal with his team entering the crucial final two-plus weeks of the regular season.

Bailey was placed on the seven-day concussion list last week after he was hurt in a home plate collision with Jeimer Candelario in the seventh inning of an 11-8 loss to the Chicago Cubs on Sept. 5 at Wrigley Field.

Bailey, who ran the bases Tuesday, said this was the third concussion he’s had, adding that to be cleared to play, he needed to get his heart rate up to make sure he didn’t experience any more symptoms.

“It (stinks),” missing time, Bailey said, “but I’ve felt normal.”

Bailey was hitting .227 with a .663 OPS in 102 plate appearances over 29 games since Aug. 1. The Giants were 4-2 in his absence before Tuesday’s game with the Guardians and were 1½ games back of the Arizona Diamondbacks for the National League’s third and final wild-card spot.

Conforto also ran the bases as he continues to work his way back from a left hamstring strain that’s kept him out since Aug. 23.

While Conforto is “headed in the right direction,” per Kapler, he likely won’t be activated until sometime during the four-game series with the Colorado Rockies that starts Thursday.

“We need to make sure that he’s recovering well day to day and feeling confident that he’s safe and physically ready to play,” Kapler said, “but also ready to do everything necessary on the baseball field.”

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After their four-game series with the Rockies, against whom they are 8-1 this season, the Giants start a critical two-game set against the Diamondbacks. Then, after a four-game series against the NL West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers from Sept. 21-24, only six games will be left in the regular season.

“You can envision a scenario where in the next 48 hours — or a little bit more — you could have a roster that is, I think, full,” Kapler said. “Maybe 48 hours is too definitive, but in the next few days.”