PHILADELPHIA -- The six-to-eight week estimate the Giants first gave for Johnny Cueto's return will be at least eight. The right-hander was put on the 60-day disabled list Thursday, clearing a roster spot for Jose Valdez, who adds a fresh arm to the bullpen. Cueto is not eligible to return until June 28, but manager Bruce Bochy said that's about the date they were looking at anyway.
In the meantime, Bochy is trying to patch his way through a stretch of 17 consecutive games without two starters who usually go deep. Madison Bumgarner will throw a bullpen session next week but figures to be at least a month away. To make it through this stretch, the Giants have shuttled relievers in and out. They don't have a true long man, and Derek Law was the latest to take the hit.
Law flew to Philadelphia, threw 2 1/3 innings Wednesday night, and then was optioned. The timing was poor for Law; he's a Pittsburgh native and won't make the trip home for this weekend's series. Law has twice been optioned after seeing heavy work. D.J. Snelten was optioned earlier this week after throwing 54 pitches.
"We need guys who can give us multiple innings and length," Bochy said. "You're seeing some of these guys get stretched out more."
Bochy said Tyler Beede and Derrick Rodriguez were considered as additions, but the Giants want to keep them on turn in the minors in case they are needed as starters. Beede is coming off a good start. Instead it was Valdez, who has 46 previous big league appearances under his belt.
--- Andrew McCutchen is getting a scheduled day off. Ditto for Buster Posey. The staff is trying to spread out the off days given this current stretch.
--- Bumgarner should be on a rehab appearance in about two weeks. He played catch again Thursday morning and has had no setbacks. For reference, Bumgarner made four minor league rehab starts when he was hurt last year.
--- Hunter Pence is close to restarting his rehab assignment. There is nothing new with Mac Williamson, but he will need a rehab assignment when he's cleared of this concussion.