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Ankle surgery an option for DeSclafani as he returns to IL

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DeSclafani

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants have completely avoided long-term contracts in recent years, knowing that they often look bad in the later years of the deal. But when it comes to the only player who has gotten a three-year deal since Farhan Zaidi took over, it's the first year that's been problematic so far.

Anthony DeSclafani has struggled in five starts and already missed two months with an ankle injury, and after he was put back on the IL on Friday afternoon, it's unclear when the right-hander will next pitch for the Giants. Asked whether surgery would be an option for DeSclafani, manager Gabe Kapler said "everything is on the table" right now.

DeSclafani has tried just about everything else in an effort to move past an injury that bothered him a bit last season and has been a consistent issue this year. He originally went on the IL in late April and missed 53 games, which the Giants hoped would help get the soreness out of an ankle that DeSclafani pushes off the mound with. Since returning, he has allowed 12 earned runs over 5 2/3 innings in two starts. 

On Friday, the Giants and DeSclafani once again decided to explore their options. He went back on the IL and infielder Jason Vosler was called up, with a bullpen game likely for Sunday's series finale against the Chicago White Sox. 

 

"I think there's real concern there," Kapler said. "Look, he's battled through this for a really long time. He's pushed himself, he's rehabbed, he's done everything he possibly can and he's still kind of hitting a wall. It's not the best signal when you're not able to get over the hump and feel the most athletic and effective version of yourself as a pitcher.

"I think we've gotten to a place now where we have to protect him and consider all options, but the first thing is not having him go out and make another start."

Kapler said the medical staff will work with DeSclafani to figure out the next step. If it is some sort of surgical procedure, that would be another lengthy layoff for a pitcher who was being counted on to be a mid-rotation starter this year and the next two. DeSclafani signed a three-year, $36 million deal just before the lockout.

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The Giants do not have any off days before the All-Star break, so they can't move guys up. But they do have help on the way. Jakob Junis threw a bullpen session on Friday and is getting close to being an option. Junis slid into the rotation when DeSclafani was put on the IL the first time and posted a 3.32 ERA in seven starts.

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