SAN FRANCISCO The Giants will make a public decision within48 hours on whether they will consider the possibility of adding Melky Cabrerato the postseason roster, manager Bruce Bochy said Tuesday.
Cabrera, who is serving a 50-game suspension after testingpositive for testosterone, would be eligible to play in the event the Giantsadvance beyond a fifth playoff game. But the distraction factor is just one ofmany angles they must consider and theyll have to decide soon.
Thats because under terms of his suspension, Cabrera iseligible to begin a minor league rehab assignment after serving the first 40games -- which would be Saturday, major league sources confirmed. Although the minor league seasons are over, Cabrera could see livepitching at the Giants minor league complex in Scottsdale, Ariz., where manyof their better prospects have gathered for instructional league.
Bochy said a decision would be announced before thehomestand concludes on Thursday.
He needs to know and we need to know, Bochy said.
This is a sticky situation because teams are not allowed toinflict further punitive measures on players after they serve suspensions forviolating the leagues drug policy. Although the Giants could leave Cabrera offthe playoff roster and easily explain it as a baseball decision, given his long layoffand the success of the club in his absence, they could face a grievance if theydo not give Cabrera the opportunity to work with prospects in an attempt toregain his form and fitness.
Although some uniformed personnel remain open minded to theidea of Cabrera boosting the club down the stretch, upper management is thoughtto be firmly against the idea, citing the level of deception involved inCabreras positive test and subsequent cover-up attempt.
Cabrera, a switch-hitting left fielder, had a .346 averageand was leading the major leagues in both hits and runs scored when hispositive test was announced Aug. 15. The Giants have gone 25-11 since thesuspension while cruising to the NL West title.
Cabrera, who was the All-Star Game MVP in July, will be afree agent after the season.