Bochy denies any rift between Posey and Lincecum


Bochy denies any rift between Posey and Lincecum

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PHILADELPHIA Giants manager Bruce Bochy was adamant: Thereis no rift between Tim Lincecum and Buster Posey.

There is no lack of confidence in Poseys ability to coaxthe Giants two-time Cy Young winner out of his season-long doldrums.

As curious as it looked for Bochy to start Eli Whiteside onFriday night, the sixth consecutive Lincecum start without Posey behind theplate, Bochy insisted that it was his call.

And what about the notion, reported as fact by at least onenational baseball scribe, that Posey likely wont catch Lincecum again thisseason?

That is completely false completely false, Bochy said.Timmy doesnt care who he throws to, and its my call when I want to getBuster a break.

At least as far as appearances are concerned, the Posey-Lincecumsituation went from a bit curious to downright strange on Friday. The Giantswere playing a night game after a day game in Atlanta, so there would appear tobe little incentive to rest Posey.

But Bochy said Posey was worn out after Thursdays game inwarm conditions. And Bochy acknowledged one other factor that hadnt beenspoken aloud until now: Catching Lincecum is a bear.

(Posey) wasnt going to catch all three, I wanted to givehim a breather, and to be honest, Timmy can be hard on a catcher, Bochy said. Hecan beat you up pretty good, and I didnt want Buster to be in another toughgame after catching on hot weather (Thursday).

And thats the truth. Its totally my decision here.

Bochy also anticipated the next question, saying he hasevery confidence in Poseys ability to handle Lincecum.

Youve watched him, Bochy said. You know how many ballshe bounces. You see the movement. And hes got such great stuff. He does liketo throw a lot of balls down in the dirt. He does that effectively.

Busters handled him fine. Its just that day gameyesterday, he felt it. Talking to him, he felt it.

I dont want to wear him down. You get to a point ofdiminishing returns with guys and then they need two or three days off to gettheir legs back.

Posey, who is starting at first base in the series opener atCitizens Bank Park, is on pace to start 108 games at catcher. Thats in the middleto high end of the range that the coaching staff and front office expected inspring training.

The offshoot is that Brandon Belts bat is giving way toWhiteside. That was less of a concern when Hector Sanchez was the backupcatcher. But now the Giants will have problems lengthening the lineup on dayswhen Posey isnt behind the plate.

Giants avoid arbitration with Nunez, Smith, Kontos

Giants avoid arbitration with Nunez, Smith, Kontos

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants avoided arbitration with three more veterans on Friday, agreeing to one-year deals with third baseman Eduardo Nuñez, left-hander Will Smith and right-hander George Kontos.

Financial details were not immediately available. MLB Trade Rumors' projections put Nuñez at about $4.4 million, Smith at about $2.3 million, and Kontos at about $1.7 million. The Giants reached deals with all six arbitration eligible players this offseason. 

Nunez, acquired last summer, will enter camp as the starter at third base. He posted a .269/.327/.418 slash line and 12 stolen bases after coming over from the Twins.

Smith was also acquired before the trade deadline, and he had a 2.95 ERA in 26 appearances for the Giants. He is expected to play a pivotal role in setting up for new closer Mark Melancon. 

Kontos has long been Bruce Bochy's most reliable reliever in the middle innings and he could move to a higher-leverage role in a revamped bullpen. He had a 2.53 ERA in 2016, his fifth season with the Giants.

The Giants had previously reached one-year deals with Cory Gearrin, Ehire Adrianza and Conor Gillaspie. They have not gone to an arbitration hearing since 2004, when a deal could not be reached with A.J. Pierzynski. 

Giants Hall-of-Famer Gaylord Perry: Enshrine Bonds, not Rose


Giants Hall-of-Famer Gaylord Perry: Enshrine Bonds, not Rose

MLB Hall-of-Famer and two-time Cy Young winner Gaylord Perry believes home run king Barry Bonds will eventually be inducted into the baseball Hall of Fame. 

"I think he’ll get in eventually," Perry said, according to USA Today. "If you have a player like that, pretty soon, you put him in."

Perry, 78, was infamous for doctoring baseballs on the mound and throwing a spitball. Author of 314 career wins over a 22-year season, Perry was inducted into Cooperstown in 1991. His No. 36 is one of 10 numbers retired by the Giants. 

But Perry doesn't feel the same about hit king Pete Rose.

"Pete did the worst thing possible, worse than steroids," Perry said. "He put money on games, win or lose. He’s paying the price."

Bonds, 52, was a seven-time MVP, a 14-time All-Star, a 12-time Silver Slugger, an eight-time Gold Glover. He owns the most home runs (762), the most walks (2,558) and the most intentional walks (688) in MLB history.

Rose, 75, was Rookie of the Year, MVP and a 17-time All-Star. He owns the most games (3,562), plate appearances (15,890), at-bats (14,053), and hits (4,256) in MLB history.