Pablo Sandoval could be cleared to rejoin Giants on Sunday

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Good news here for the Giants, who are clinging to a half-game advantage in the National League West.

From CSNBayArea.com’s Andrew Baggarly comes word that Pablo Sandoval is tentatively scheduled to play in minor league rehab games Friday and Saturday at High-A San Jose and could be activated from the 15-day disabled list as early as Sunday.

Sandoval has been on the shelf since July 25 with a hamstring strain that he sustained while stretching for a thrown ball at first base. He ran in the outfield Tuesday afternoon at Busch Stadium in St. Louis and has a similar workout planned for Wednesday.

“Kung Fu Panda” was batting .299/.352/.491 with eight homers and 33 RBI in 62 games played this season.

Report: Orioles interested in Lance Lynn

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The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.

Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.

Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.