Will Smith out with elbow inflammation

Lefty reliever hopes to return before end of Spring Training

Will Smith out with elbow inflammation

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Giants learned Wednesday that left-hander Will Smith has inflammation in his throwing elbow, which is expected to sideline him for more than a month.

The ailment won't require surgery, just rest, which isn't such a bad thing for the Giants. Due to Spring Training's duration, which is longer this year due to logistics surrounding the World Baseball Classic, players are able to condition themselves at a more leisurely pace.

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"Nobody's pressing the panic button because we have 14 weeks in Spring Training this year," Smith joked.

He estimated that he'll pitch in six relief outings in the exhibition season's final two weeks, which should prepare him sufficiently for the regular season. The Giants begin the 2017 campaign on April 2 at Arizona.

"It doesn't take me a long time to get ready," said Smith.

A Trade Deadline acquisition from the Brewers last year, Smith, 27, pitched 13 2/3 shutout innings in his final 18 regular-season outings.

Even without Smith, the Giants still maintain a respectable left-handed presence in their bullpen with Josh Osich and Steven Okert.

Osich fans Jankowski, side

Osich finished 1-3 with a 4.71 ERA in 59 outings but led the Major Leagues by permitting just two of 43 inherited baserunners to score. Playing most of the season on an aching left knee, Osich limited left-handed batters to a .156 batting average. However, right-handers hit .322 off him.

Okert recorded a 3.21 ERA in 16 appearances last year for the Giants. Though he spent most of the season with Triple-A Sacramento, he was named to the roster for the Wild Card Game at Citi Field.

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.