San Francisco Giants general manager Brian Sabean said he felt like he got "punched in the stomach" when he learned of Melky Cabrera's 50-game suspension for testing positive for testosterone.
In his first public comments since the Wednesday suspension, Sabena told reporters on Thursday about his initial reaction.
"I was so taken aback it was deflating," Sabean said. "I was actually in the meeting with Bruce (Bochy) when he talked to the players and I kind of got emotional because I didn't see something like this coming. We've all been around this game a long time. You get used to making changes and adjustments. Things happen out of left field, a lot like life, and this was one of those things you're punched in the stomach with. But you've got no choice but to figure out how to move on."
He said the acquisition of Hunter Pence had nothing to do with any suspicion they might have had regarding Cabrera, claiming he did not know about the suspension until the public did.
"We didn't find out until we were notified yesterday (Wednesday) morning with Bruce (Bochy)," Sabean said.
He could not speculate on Cabrera's future with the club.
"I can't answer that now," said. "There are a lot of blanks to be filled in, as a result of this."
Cabrera is the second Giants player to be suspended this season, joining pitcher Guillermo Mota.
"In our case, it's two veteran major league players that should know the policy and should know the consequences better," he said.
The immediate concern for the Giants is plugging someone into the No. 3 slot in the batting order to replace Cabrera.
"I mean we have a survival instinct, seemingly - right now it's about winning series," Sabean said. "Dodgers were 5-1 in the last six games, we're 3-3. They won two series in a row and we are 1-1. We know how to cut up the games left and what we need to do."