SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Head trainer Dave Groeschner was headed back to camp Tuesday after several weeks with the Dutch team in the World Baseball Classic. All of a sudden, he's returning to a crowded trainer's room.
After a remarkably healthy month, the Giants are dropping left and right, changing some important races for opening day spots. The latest to go down was Michael Morse. The bench candidate hurt his hamstring during Monday's game and he's expected to be out "a while," per a team official. Morse was on track to win the fifth outfield job.
The Giants are also prepared for the worst with Will Smith, who headed back to San Francisco for a second opinion on his damaged elbow ligament. Mac Williamson remains sidelined by a strained quad; Trevor Brown is day-to-day with a rolled ankle; right-hander Bryan Morris has a hairline fracture in his right foot and is expected to need two or three more weeks before he's cleared to resume throwing.
While the others are waiting for their ailments to clear, Morse is likely left with a difficult decision. He has been open about the fact that it's San Francisco-or-bust this spring, but he is now looking at rehabbing the injury, likely down here in Scottsdale. If Morse wants to continue playing, the Giants would surely let him get healthy in Arizona and then get up to speed in Sacramento.
Morse had started to heat up in recent weeks and members of the staff anticipated him making the opening day roster. If both Morse and Williamson remain out, the Giants can turn to Justin Ruggiano or Chris Marrero to pair with Jarrett Parker in left. They have also gotten Aaron Hill, Gordon Beckham and Jae-gyun Hwang work in left field. Carrying one of those players could open a spot for a Kelby Tomlinson or Jimmy Rollins. Brown might have been an option as a third catcher, but he hasn't played since Saturday.
Morris, signed in the offseason to compete for a bullpen spot, has been sidelined since the end of February. He initially was dealing with a muscle issue. When that cleared, he got drilled by a comebacker during a live BP drill.