March 2012

Mike Fontenot’s release provides hint of other Giants’ roster decisions

I have a photo that I use as the wallpaper on my computer.

It’s an image of 14 Giants converging on the mound to celebrate the final out of the 2010 World Series.

When the Giants opening spring training this year, five of those players in the photo were not longer with the team: Eugenio Velez, Mark DeRosa, Pat Burrell, Jonathan Sanchez and Travis Ishikawa.

On Friday, the Giants added another name to that list … Mike Fontenot.

The decision to cut the middle infielder came as a surprise to many Giants fans.

“(Roster cuts are) always tough, and Mike in particular,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “He’s very popular. I talked to him, thanked him for all he did to help us. With how the numbers were falling, we just couldn’t find a spot.”

Bochy said three factors played into the decision to release Fontenot: 1, The strong spring of Emmanuel Burriss, who now looks to be the starting 2B; 2, Fontenot’s .227 average last year; 3, the need for more right-handed bats in the lineup, and that led the Giants to pick Ryan Theriot over Fontenot.

Friday was the day to decide on guarantee contracts. So the Giants released Fontenot, while Theriot and Clay Hensley had their deals guaranteed.

Even with that, Bochy wasn’t tipping his hand on what players will make the 25-man roster. He wouldn’t even confirm that Theriot and Hensley were on the team.

“You can speculate on that,” he said. “It’s not my place to say something now.”

Going off the assumption that the Giants will break camp with 13 positions players, here’s how the opening day lineup could look like:
1B: Aubrey Huff; 2B: Emmanuel Burriss; SS: Brandon Crawford; 3B Pablo Sandoval; C: Buster Posey; OF: Melky Cabrera, Angel Pagan and Nate Schierholtz.

And we can also assume two of the five bench spots are locked in: Theriot and OF Gregor Blanco.

Another bench spot will be for the backup catcher: Eli Whiteside, Chris Stewart, or even possibly, Hector Sanchez.

That leaves two more spots.

Bochy said the staff is leaning toward keeping a fourth middle infielder, which means Joaquin Arias is in line to make the club.

If that happens, there’s one spot left … for Brandon Belt or Brett Pill.

Both players can play 1B or OF, although Pill played 3B in a minor-league game on Friday.

Also possible, the Giants could keep Hector Sanchez as a third catch and send both Belt and Pill to Fresno.

OTHER MOVES: The Giants also sent three players officially to the disabled list: 2B Freddy Sanchez, P Dan Runzler and P Ryan Vogelsong.

Padres 8, Giants 7: Barry Zito, world’s most expensive BP pitcher


It’s time to start worrying, Giants fans. Barry Zito may have hit a new low.

And for Zito, that’s saying something.

The San Diego Padres thumped the Giants pitcher for five runs on seven hits (five extra-base hits) and three walks in three innings.

And it took Zito 69 pitches to get through those three innings. He threw only 34 strikes.

Here’s how his outing went.


  • Cameron Maybin walked, then picked off first base
  • Orlando Hudson walked
  • Chase Headley lines out to right
  • Jesus Guzman doubles to left, Hudson scores
  • Nick Hundley doubles to left, Guzman scores
  • Kyle Blanks singles to left, Hundley scores
  • Chris Denorfria flies to right


  • Everth Cabrera singles to right
  • Dustin Moseley sacrifices Cabrera to 2nd
  • Maybin grounds to short
  • Hudson flies to center


  • Headley grounds out to 2nd
  • Guzman walks
  • Hundley doubles to center, Guzman scores, Hundley out trying to advance to 3rd
  • Blanks doubles to left
  • Denorfria triples to center, Blanks scores
  • Cabrera grounds out to first

Zito recorded nine outs, but two were recorded on the basepaths and a third was recorded on a sacrifice (on a 3-0 pitch to the pitcher, thank you very much).

Zito finished Cactus League play allowing 15 earned runs in 19 1/3 innings. And his last two starts were his worst — 10 runs in 5 1/3 innings.

Zito has been battling himself and his new pitching mechanics all spring. And now, with the season looming, he’s looking to make more adjustments.

“It’s not ‘Scrap the whole thing,’ ” Zito said after Friday’s debacle. “It’s just make a small adjustment. … It’s about starting tomorrow morning with (pitching coach Dave Righetti), finding out what the adjustment is and go with it.”

Everything Zito threw was up in the zone. And when it’s up and coming in at 74-82 mph, it’s going to get clubbed.

“It’s funny how when everything is up, it seems everything is off-kilter,” Zito added. “But it’s one click.”

Sounds more like a cha-ching to us, like $19 million this season, $20 million next season, then a $7 million buyout in 2014. And that’s not funny at all.

Zito has just one more preseason start coming, next Wednesday at AT&T Park against the A’s — and two more bullpen sessions — before the start of the season.

So unless Zito develops some kind of ailment like bicep tendinitis (that’s what Jonathan Sanchez had when he stunk it up last season) or some other ailment, it looks as if he’ll be on the mound on April 9 at Colorado for his 2012 debut.

And by the looks of things, it won’t be pretty.

MoreSplashHits gives up: Bochy has officially lost his marbles

In the course of writing this blog, MoreSplashHits often reads other Giants fan blogs, comment threads and Twitter feeds. And we’re often amazed at the rabid comments by some die-hard fans over even the most mundane decisions the team makes.

Giants manager Bruce Bochy

And that’s why MoreSplashHits likes to think of ourselves as the thinking fans’ blog, more prone to analysis than outrage, the voice of reason and calm. We like to find the logic in any decision the team makes even when we don’t agree with it.

But the news that came out of Giants camp Thursday even boggles our mind.

Giants manager Bruce Bochy announced the Giants will break camp with 12 pitchers, even though Ryan Vogelsong will open the season on the DL because the Giants won’t need a fifth starter until April 15.

It had been thought that the Giants would open with 11 pitchers, four starters and seven relievers. That would allow them to keep six players on the bench, offering a brief respite from some tough roster decisions.

But Bochy said with the Giants opening the season in the hitter-friendly parks in Arizona and Colorado, he would feel more comfortable to open the season with 12 pitchers so they would not run the risk of taxing the pitching staff so early in the season.

By that logic, if Vogelsong had been healthy to open the season, the Giants would have carried 13 pitchers, leaving only four bench players.

Idiotic, right? So how does the fact that the Giants only need four starters to open the season change how much the bullpen gets taxed in the opening week of the season?

But here are some facts that undermine Bochy’s logic (or lack thereof) concerning the worries of opening up in Arizona and Colorado.

In nine home games against the Giants last season, the Diamondbacks scored 44 runs or an average of 4.9 runs a game. A high number.

But take away one game — in late September — in which Arizona scored 15 runs against the Giants, then you’re looking at 29 runs in eight game, or a 3.6 average.

With the Giants opening with their three top pitchers in Arizona — Tim Lincecum, Madison Bumgarner and Matt Cain — there’s no reason to expect the bullpen to get taxed in Arizona.

Colorado is a different deal. We all know about Coors Field and its reputation as a hitter’s park.

But the park plays differently in April than it does in say July. It is much friendlier to pitchers in April.

Last season, the Rockies averaged 5.4 runs a game at home. In April, they averaged 4.6.

Bochy’s thinking might be more reasonable if any of the Giants’ starters had experienced some health issues this spring that might have stunted their preparation for the season.

But that hasn’t been the case. Cain threw seven innings Thursday against the Rangers. Bumgarner did the same in a minor league game on Wednesday. So there’s no reason not to expect Lincecum, Cain and MadBum to pitch six, seven or even eight innings in the opening week of the season.

Barry Zito is another story. The Giants would be happy to get five or six innings from Zito in any of his starts, whether they happen in April or August.

But Zito’s first start is scheduled for Monday, April 9 in Colorado. Even if the bullpen gets overworked in that game, April 10 is a scheduled off day, so the entire staff would get a day to rest.

So wouldn’t it make more sense of the Giants to use the roster flexibility created by Vogelsong opening the season on the DL to create more depth on its bench?

Bochy should be less concerned about possibly taxing his bullpen (a strength of the team) and more concerned with taxing Buster Posey in the first week of the season.

Opening with a six-player bench would allow the Giants to keep three catchers on the roster to open the season.

It would also allow the Giants time to see how Hector Sanchez’s outstanding spring translates into the regular season.

The same could be said for Brandon Belt, who has been rumored to be ticketed to start the season in Triple-A despite tearing up the Cactus League.

If that happens, that’s a blog post regarding Bochy’s lost marbles for another day.

Giants notes: Freddy Sanchez to open season on DL

Well, it was hardly breaking news, but in Tuesday’s ESPN2 broadcast of the Angels-Giants game Giants manager Bruce Bochy announced that second baseman Freddy Sanchez would open the season on the disabled list.

Sanchez has been idle since receiving a cortisone shot in his troublesome shoulder on Sunday. The Giants hope Sanchez can resume light throwing by mid-week. He was getting at-bats as a DH in a minor-league game on Wednesday.

But until he can show he can make all throws necessary to play second base, he won’t be playing for the Giants.

Bochy said Tuesday that he’s hoping Sanchez can be ready to play for the Giants “sometime in April.” But at this point, we’re not really sure he’ll return at all.

The Giants have said Sanchez’s rehab from shoulder surgery last year has hit a plateau. They hope the cortisone shots will be the spark that will Sanchez to push through this plateau and get back on the road to recovery.

In the meantime, it looks as if Emmanuel Burriss is the front-runner to win the start at 2B on April 6. Mike Fontenot and Ryan Theriot are also in the mix.

The Giants face a Thursday deadline to guarantee deals for Fontenot and Theriot. It looks as if they will do just that.

Theriot was hit on the nose with a pickoff throw on Monday. Yet, he is starting at 3B against the Dodgers on Wednesday. If the Giants were thinking of releasing Theriot on Thursday, it would figure they wouldn’t bother playing him Wednesday.

What can he show them in two days that they haven’t seen already.

But given the uncertainty of Sanchez, the veteran presence of Theriot (plus his right-handed bat) is something the Giants aren’t likely ready to part with.


This isn’t the start he was looking for, but it looks as if Ryan Vogelsong will make his second opening-day start for the Fresno Grizzlies.

After making his spring debut with a 39-pitch outing against the Royals on Monday, Vogelsong will pitch in a minor-league game Saturday so that the Giants can start the clock on his 15 days on the disabled list to open the season.

The plan is for Vogelsong to be ready to open the season on April 15 against the Pirates.

To get there, Vogelsong will start the season opener for Triple-A Fresno at Tucson on April 5. His next start for the Grizzlies would come on April 10 at Las Vegas.


Arizona manager Kirk Gibson announced his starting rotation for the 2012 season. It means we can lineup the opening series between the Diamondbacks and Giants

Friday, April 6: Tim Lincecum vs. Ian Kennedy, 4 p.m. ESPN2

Saturday, April 7: Madison Bumgarner vs. Daniel Hudson, 1 p.m. FOX

Sunday, April 8: Matt Cain vs. Josh Collmenter, 1 p.m.

Those are three right-handers for Arizona. Good news for Giants, who figure to open with a lineup that will include four switch hitters (Angel Pagan, Melky Cabrera, Pablo Sandoval and Emmanuel Burriss) and three left-handers (Brandon Crawford, Aubrey Huff or Brandon Belt, and Nate Schierholtz or Gregor Blanco).

Angels 5, Giants 3: Do the Giants still have Pagan belief?


Manager Bruce Bochy talked about the Giants’ plan this season to get some speed at the top of the order to set the table and create some runs.

But that speed doesn’t help you if you’re rolling weak infield grounders.

That’s what we’ve seen from Angel Pagan this spring. It’s getting late, and it’s starting to be a concern.

Pagan broke an 0-for-26 skid with an eighth-inning double. His spring average currently sits at .179.

And it’s not just the outs that he’s making. It’s the type of outs.

On Tuesday, he didn’t hit the ball out of the infield in his first three at-bats — popping out to the pitcher, grounding to short and second base.

Then he finally breaks the slump by making an inside-out swing and shooting an inside pitch the opposite way for double inside the bag at third … and then gets picked off a second base.

And finally he struck out looking to end the game with the tying run on base.

Bochy appeared to be talking out of both sides of his mouth — or other parts of his body — when it comes to the Giants outfield and leadoff situations.

In one breath, Bochy said that the decision to keep Gregor Blanco on the 25-man roster has not been made, even most observers could not see that NOT happening.

Then with another breath, he’s included Blanco as a leadoff option.

Most telling is when Bochy was given the opportunity to dispell any ideas that Pagan won’t be in center field and leading off on April 6, the manager passed.

“I’m not going to announce the lineup now,” Bochy said. “We’ve got some time here. There’s eight or nine days. (Pagan) could get hot and somebody else could get cold. Now is not the time to write the lineup. We have a pretty good idea.”

Pagan will spend the next couple of days working on his swing in minor-league games.


  • It was a good news/bad news outing for Tim Lincecum. Lincecum struggled with his fastball command. The best example of this came when Lincecum faced Angels pitcher Brad Mills, who went to the plate with instructions not to swing. Even so, Lincecum had to go to full counts on both at-bats before striking Mills out — his only two strikeouts Tuesday. That’s the bad news. The good news is that even with a lack of command, Lincecum still got through five innings giving up two runs on five hits and two walks.
  • C Buster Posey went 0 for 2 with a walk. But more importantly, he caught seven innings on his first back-to-back start at catcher. For more on Buster’s day, which was also his 25th birthday, click here.
  • 1B Brandon Belt went 1 for 4 with some loud outs. He’s hitting .370 this spring, yet it appears possible, even likely, that he will begin the season in Fresno. That may sound incredible to you (it does to us), but to find out more, click here.


It’s Madison Bumgarner’s turn to throw Wednesday, but he’ll do that in minor league camp. Not wanting to show MadBum to the division rival Dodgers, the Giants will throw Yusmeiro Petit in the 1:05 p.m. game Wednesday.

Giants 4, Royals 2: Good news on Vogelsong


The pitching news from spring training started out bad Monday after the Giants were coming off a terrible outing from Barry Zito.

Things got worse when word spread that Eric Surkamp, viewed to be the first option for the starting rotation if anyone got hurt or pounded, was being shut down for a week with irritated elbow.

On Sunday, GM Brian Sabaen hinted that the Giants might need a No. 5 starter OTHER THAN Vogelsong on April 15.

So Giants were holding their breath when Ryan Vogelsong took the mound Monday against the Royals in his first big-league game this spring after suffering a back strain last month.

Well, Giants fans, exhale.

Vogelsong gave up one run on two hits in 2 2/3 innings, striking out two in his 39-pitch outing. Both Kansas City hits deflected off Giants outfielders. With a little help, Vogelsong could have sailed through a hitless outing.

“I defintiely felt better the second and third inning mechanically and rhythm-wise,” Vogelsong said. “I kind of fell into a good rhythm after the first inning, get that first one out of the way and get back to business.”

After the game, manager Bruce Bochy called Vogelsong’s outing a huge relief and said the plan is for Vogelsong to work towards making his first start on April 15 at home against the Pirates. That means a trip to the DL to open the season.’s Andrew Baggarly wrote that Vogelsong will pitch next Saturday and will throw 50 pitches. MoreSplashHits believes that Saturday start will be in a minor league game so the Giants can backdate his DL stint early enough for him to be activated on April 15.

His next outing would then come on April 5, either in extended spring training or possibly the Fresno Grizzlies’ season opener at Tucson (although spring training seems more likely).

Finally, Vogelsong could be slotted to pitch April 10 for the Grizzlies at Las Vegas. That would put him right on line to start 15th against the Bucs.

“If that’s what they tell me to do, that’s what I need to do,” Vogelsong said.

Sounds good to us.


  • 3B Pablo Sandoval, who has been scuffling this spring, got things together Monday. He went 3 for 5 with an infield, a double and a game-winning two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth.
  • OF Angel Pagan, who also has been scuffling, continued to scuffle. He went 0 for 4 with a strikeout. The Chronicle’ Henry Schulman tweeted that Pagan looks lost at the plate. Need more evidence? Pagan’s .176 spring average is worse than Aaron Rowand’s .182. Yikes!
  • Another Giant whose spring keeps getting worse is Ryan Theriot. Theriot rolled his ankle last week but was back at shortstop Monday, with his .194 spring average. Then Theriot went to catch a pick off attempt by Vogelsong at second base when the ball glanced off his glove and hit him in the nose. Theriot was bleeding heavily, but the Giants don’t believe his nose is broken. He went for X-rays afterwards. Even if it’s not broken, the Giants face a Thursday deadline to decide whether to guarantee Theriot’s $1.25 million contract.
  • So time is running short.
  • C Buster Posey caught seven more innings Monday, and went 1 for 2 with a double and a walk. His spring average is .333. He’ll catchTim Lincecum on Tuesday in his first back-to-back catching effort of the season.
  • Brian Wilson pitched a scoreless inning, giving up one hits and striking out one before declaring himself ready to go for the season.


Lincecum will make his second-to-last spring start when the Giants face the Angels at 1:05 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPN2.

White Sox 5, Giants 2: Barry Zito and his downhill plane


Well, that was a very Barry Zito-like outing.

While Zito has had some good moments this spring, Sunday’s game against the White Sox was not one of them.

Zito gave up five runs (all earned) on nine hits and two walks in 2 1/3 innings.

“The ball was up in the zone,” Zito said. “I’ve been harping on getting the ball dow, throwing in a downhill plane. Today I was just rushing my body and the arm couldn’t catch up. Downhill plane is everything.”

Well, Giants fans know all to well about Zito and his downhill plane.

Zito’s outing is worth a second look (perhaps not for those with weak stomachs).

It started well enough, with Alejandro De Aza striking out. But then came a double to Brent Lillibridge, a walk to Adam Dunn and an RBI single by Paul Kornerko. However, Dunn helped the Giants out by trying to take third on the play and was thrown out by Melky Cabrera.

Then came another walk to AJ Pierzynski. A single to Alex Rios loaded the bases. Then Zito got out of the mess by striking out Dayan Viciedo.

So the first inning line was 1 run on three hits and two walks.

Gordon Beckham opened the second with a double and took third on a single by Eduardo Escobar to open the second. De Aza bunted Beckham home for the second run of the game and first out of the inning. Lillibridge grounded out and Dunn struck out.

Konerko opened the third with a single, then Pierzynksi homered to left. Rios made it back-to-back by homering to left. Viciedo grounded out, but Beckham’s double to left brought the hook for Zito.

Zito threw 60 pitches in the game, then threw another 25 in the bullpen after getting pulled.

“Just give us a chance to win,” manager Bruce Bochy said of the expectations of Zito this season. “He got knocked out today. That’s what we want to stay away from. He never got settled in. Every inning was a struggle for him. If (Cabrera) didn’t make that play in the first inning, I don’t think he gets out of that inning.”

Despite seeing his spring ERA jumping from 4.50 to 6.61, Zito is in no danger of losing his spot in the rotation.

“He was out of sync,” Bochy said. “He couldn’t get the ball where he wanted. He just didn’t have it today. You don’t like to see it when you get this close to the season, but it’s going to happen, and better now than during the season.”
I guess.

Charting Zito starts this spring, his next start should come Friday against the Padres, then April 4 at AT&T Park against the A’s in the preseason finale. That would align him to make his first start of the season on April 9 at Colorado, assuming Ryan Vogelsong starts the season on the DL.


A late-spring road game meant most regulars did not play against the White Sox. And the ones that did, didn’t do much (Gregor Blanco 0 for 3, Nate Schierholtz 0 for 3, Melky Cabrera 0 for 2 with a walk, Brett Pill 0 for 4).


Ryan Vogelsong will get the start and aim to make 40 pitches as the Giants face the Royals at 1:05 p.m. Monday.

Giants 6, Reds 4: Cain is just about ready to go


Well, we can see that Matt Cain is about ready for the season. Maybe the Giants ought to thinking about signing this guy past this season. Just a thought.

Cain sailed through five innings against the Reds, giving up no runs, four hits, no walks and fanning five.

“Everything is going good,” Cain told the AP. “I’m just getting my pitch count up. … I don’t have much to work on.”

Cain is on schedule to start Thursday against the Rangers in his final spring start in the desert. Then, he should get the call on April 3 against the A’s in Oakland. That would align him perfectly to throw in Game No. 3 of the regular season on April 8 at Arizona.


  • OF Gregor Blanco showed a rare boost of power, belting a home run in the second inning. He finished 1 for 5. His spring average has been slowly dipping in the past week down to .373. But it doesn’t matter much. His speed and glove will keep him on the roster, two things that don’t go into a slump.
  • 1B Brandon Belt keeps doing his thang. He went 3 for 4 with a walk and a double. He’s hitting .380. Although Bruce Bochy still says the decision on whether to keep Belt on roster will go down to the wire, we can’t see how he doesn’t break camp with the club.
  • OF Nate Schierholtz went 2 for 3 with a walk, as he tries to get things together as talk begins to circulate that his RF job is jeopardy (possibly to Belt, who would actually play LF with Melky Cabrera sliding to RF).


Barry Zito gets the start as the Giants travel to play the White Sox at 1:05 p.m. The game will be aired on tape-delay at 9 p.m. on MLB Network.

Rangers 4, Giants 1: Buster Posey safe at home


It seems with every game Buster Posey plays this spring, he hits a new milestone in his recovery from last year’s season-ending injury.

On Friday against the Rangers, it was Posey first play at home since getting bulled over by the Marlins’ Scott Cousins.

But by all accounts, Posey passed this test, like he’s passed just about all other tests this spring.

Well, except, the runner wasn’t out. But who cares? Posey was not hurt.

“One run’s not worth him missing the whole year again,” pitcher Madison Bumgarner put it.

The play came in the fifth inning, with the Rangers’ Mitch Moreland on second when Elvis Andrus singled to center.

Angel Pagan came up throwing home on the play. It was a good throw. Posey positioned himself in front of home plate, a bit more out in front than on the Cousins play last May. Moreland then came into the plate wide with a hook side.

Posey fielded the throw, then lunged at Moreland with a sweep tag. At first it appeared that Posey missed Moreland all together. But Posey said he tagged him high. It’s hard to say whether Moreland’s hand swiped the plate before Posey’s tag.

Even though every one else in the park might have been thinking about it, Posey said he wasn’t thinking back to last May when the play developed.

“I was more thinking kind of about the work we’d done this spring and all the practice and stuff,” Posey said. “And I think … it was was good.”

It may have been the first play at the plate, but it won’t be Posey’s last. But again, it’s a step.

Oh and the home plate umpire who made the call at the plate? Derryl Cousins, oddly enough. No relation.


  • Somewhat lost in the hub-bub of the Posey play at the plate was the fact that it appeared that the Giants were headed to their second consecutive shutout loss. That is until Brett Pill’s home run in the ninth inning. It was Pill’s third homer this spring and second in three days as he makes a late push to make the club.
  • 1B Brandon Belt, also competing to make the club, went 2 for 3 with a walk. He’s hitting .348 this spring.
  • Aubrey Huff, getting the start in left, had a double over the center fielder’s head in left-center. It was Huff’s first double of the spring.
  • Ryan Theriot started at 3B and went 0 for 3, dropping his spring average to .200 — although he was robbed of an infield hit by a bad call at first.
  • Meanwhile, Emmanuel Burriss started at 2B and went 2 for 3, raising his averge to .436.
  • Madison Bumgarner gave up one run in 5 2/3 innings (the run coming on that play at the plate). But he also gave up eight hits, all singles. In fact, the Rangers had 13 hits in the game, all singles.
  • Javier Lopez got tagged for three runs on four singles in the ninth.
  • Sergio Romo returned to action after sitting out with a cranky elbow. He had a 1-2-3 eighth with a strikeout.


The Giants have their final split-squad day of the spring. Both are 1:05 p.m. games. Matt Cain will start on the road against the Reds. Posey will start at 1B in that game. Minor leaguer Travis Blackley will start in Scottsdale against the Rockies.

Rockies 7, Giants 0: Oh, boy, that was ugly

Manager Bruce Bochy best summed up the Giants performance Thursday night against the Rockies.

“Ohhh boy, this is about as ugly as we’ve had. Just had an awful game tonight,” Bochy said. “Sure (a no-hitter) would have been embarrassing. We were embarrassed tonight. I don’t care if it’s a pickup game, spring training –We’re leaving here in about 10 days.”

Yes, it’s never good when you have four times as many errors as hits. It’s never good when you get one-hit in a spring training game.

It’s never good when you go 12-up-and-12-down against a 49-year-old pitcher.

But that’s what happened. The Giants only hit was a seventh-inning double off the top of the fence by Pablo Sandoval.

Sandoval has been scuffling this spring. Bochy said he would go to a minor-league game on Friday to get more at-bats and find his groove.

It was so ugly that I didn’t even link the box score. Nothing to see there.

But there are some possible explanations for Thursday’s performance. Some good. Some not so good.

  • Giants announcers Jon Miller and Dave Fleming tried to explain that sometimes at this point in spring training players are ready to play games that count, so they lose focus. A good thought, but Thursday’s lineup included hitters who needed to focus because their swing is not quite regular-season ready.
  • The Rockies rolled out a lineup that looked a lot like they one they’ll roll out on opening day. The Giants did not. SS Brandon Crawford was under the weather and got the day off. Emmanuel Burriss and Ryan Theriot, both candidates to start at 2B if Freddy Sanche is unable to go, sat out with minor injuries. C Buster Posey got the day off. OF Nate Schierholtz was playing his first game in a few days nursing a minor injury. Even Tim Lincecum passed on facing the Rockies, choosing instead to throw in a minor-league game. So the Rockies faced Brian Burres.
  • The Giants have a tendency to struggle against soft throwers. And Moyer is the softest of soft throwers. This was the second time this spring Moyer has shut them down. He’s allowed just one hit in six innings this spring against San Francisco. The Giants can only hope that Moyer doesn’t make the Rockies rotation (doubtful) or that if he does, that he pitches in one of the Rockies first three games, and not in the Rockies’ second series of the season against the Giants (even more doubtful).
  • It was just one of those days.


Madison Bumgarner takes the hill as the Giants face the Rangers at 6:05 p.m. The game will be televised on a one-hour delay at 7 p.m. on the MLB Network. But fans with an MLB.TV subscription can watch it live.