Panik close to return; injured relievers progress

Panik close to return; injured relievers progress

CINCINNATI -- Giants second baseman Joe Panik continued to gain momentum in his recovery from a tight right groin and remained on course to return to the lineup Wednesday or Thursday.

Panik was out of the lineup for the fourth day in a row Tuesday but kept busy before the game by hitting soft-toss flips in a batting cage, running on a treadmill, performing agility drills and taking ground balls.

• Right-hander George Kontos (elbow) threw 40 pitches in two simulated innings off a bullpen mound. He'll graduate to a simulated game Friday.

• Right-hander Sergio Romo (elbow) lengthened the distance of his flat-ground tosses to 90 feet.

• Left fielder Angel Pagan, sidelined since straining his left hamstring Sunday, is apparently due for another examination.

"We'll take a day and see where we are tomorrow," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Tuesday.

Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.