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Giants don't recognize Melky Cabrera

Club is selling T-shirts with names of all its players on the back, but the disgraced outfielder is not one of them.

October 16, 2012|By Bill Shaikin
  • The Giants are moving on without Melky Cabrera.
The Giants are moving on without Melky Cabrera. (Charlie Riedel / Associated…)

SAN FRANCISCO — Melky Cabrera has been banished from the kingdom. The San Francisco Giants have so distanced themselves from their disgraced outfielder that they have made his name disappear.

The Giants are selling T-shirts with names of all their players on the back. For $32, you can get the bright orange National League West championship shirt. For $40, you can get the sedate charcoal NL Championship Series shirt.

Cabrera's name is not on either shirt.

Giants President Larry Baer said he was unaware of the names on particular T-shirts but acknowledged that the team has dropped Cabrera from its marketing and promotions since his suspension.

"We didn't feel it was appropriate," Baer said.

Cabrera was suspended 50 games after testing positive for testosterone and violating baseball's drug policy. The suspension expired after the division series, but the Giants did not reinstate him for the NLCS.

Cabrera hit .346 this season and would have won the NL batting title had he not petitioned to be declared ineligible.

If the Giants advance to the World Series, they would have home-field advantage, thanks primarily to Cabrera's most-valuable-player performance in the All-Star game.

The shirts include 32 names, not just the ones on the playoff roster.

The players listed include Brian Wilson, who pitched two innings this season before undergoing elbow surgery, and outfielder Justin Christian and pitcher Shane Loux, who have been removed from the 40-man roster.

Tim Lincecum to start

The Giants plan to return Tim Lincecum to the starting rotation for Game 4.

In three postseason relief appearances, he has given up one run and three hits in 81/3 innings, with nine strikeouts.

Lincecum would be making his first start in 18 days. The two-time NL Cy Young Award winner was 3-10 with a 6.42 earned-run average before the All-Star break, and 7-5 with a 3.83 ERA after the break.

Manager Bruce Bochy said he had not decided whether Madison Bumgarner or Barry Zito would start Game 5.

Bumgarner was roughed up and lost Game 1, the third consecutive start in which he failed to last five innings.

Long road to victory

The Giants selected Ryan Vogelsong in the fifth round of the 1998 draft, then traded him to the Pittsburgh Pirates three years later for Jason Schmidt. He pitched for seven minor league teams, and in Japan and Venezuela, before returning to the Giants last year.

He got his first postseason victory Monday, at age 35. And he became the first San Francisco pitcher to double in a postseason game. The last pitcher in franchise history with a postseason double: Jack Bentley in the 1923 World Series.

"All you've got to do is look at my batting average for the season and know that it was probably more luck than skill," said Vogelsong, who batted .093 in the regular season.

bill.shaikin@latimes.com

twitter.com/BillShaikin

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