Matt Cain: The question of camp. (Stan Olszewski/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Matt Cain hits the shelf

AT&T PARK — The San Francisco Giants placed starter Matt Cain on the 15-day disabled list on Thursday.

Cain surrendered six runs on three hits and three walks over 4.2 innings on Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Manager Bruce Bochy said the 11-year pro was feeling pain in his lower back after the outing.

When asked if it was a new injury, the skipper said he wasn’t sure, and asked rhetorically, “Who hasn’t had any back issues? Is there anybody?”

The Giants can operate with a four-man rotation on regular rest until Sept. 2, so they activated reliever Cory Gearrin to the 25-man roster. (Although, they’ll need a spot start — likely from Jake Peavy — on Aug. 27.)

Before being placed on the DL, Gearrin appeared in 41 games for the Giants, and is carrying a 3.89 ERA over 37 innings.

With Cain on the shelf, the Giants can load their rotation with two lefties (Madison Bumgarner and Matt Moore) for their upcoming series with rival, and the first-place, Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers have the third-worst OPS against southpaws in the MLB.

Bruce Bochycory gearrinjacob c. palmerMatt CainMLBSan Francisco Giants

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