Giants face rookie Lynn in finale vs. St. Louis

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Giants face rookie Lynn in finale vs. St. Louis

June 2, 2011

GIANTS (30-25) vs.
ST. LOUIS (33-24)

Coverage begins at 4:30 P.M. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- In what's fast becoming an everyday occurrence, the St. Louis Cardinals are adding to a crowded injured list.

Having already lost pitcher Kyle McClellan, the Cardinals are expected to put slugger Matt Holliday on the 15-day disabled list before looking to split a four-game set with the San Francisco Giants on Thursday.

Holliday, who leads the NL with a .342 average, will be sidelined with a injured quadriceps. He returned from a week-long absence and went 1 for 4 in Monday's 7-3 loss to the Giants, but was a pinch-hitter in a 4-3 win Tuesday.

Allen Craig and Jon Jay should get the bulk of the playing time in left field during Holliday's absence. Craig is hitting .337 with four homers and 21 RBIs, while Jay is batting .342 with four homers and 14 RBIs.

Lance Berkman likely will bat fourth in place of Holliday despite an 0-for-12 slump that's dropped his average to .329.

McClellan, a converted reliever who's second on the Cardinals with six wins, was put on the DL Wednesday, two days after straining a hip flexor.

"At some point we were going to have to probably slow him down anyway, and this is just a nice opportunity to do that," general manager John Mozeliak said.

St. Louis also is without catcher Gerald Laird (finger) and infielder Nick Punto (arm). Ace Adam Wainwright is lost for the season after elbow surgery.

Lance Lynn will make his major league debut for the NL Central-leading Cardinals (33-24) in the finale. The right-hander was 5-3 with a 4.06 ERA in 10 starts at Triple-A Memphis and a 13-game winner last season for the Redbirds.

RELATED: Lynn to make MLB debut Thursday vs. Giants

San Francisco's Jonathan Sanchez (3-3, 3.38 ERA) will be in search of his first win in three weeks. The left-hander is 0-1 with 2.70 ERA in three starts since beating Arizona on April 11.

Facing Milwaukee on Saturday, Sanchez allowed two runs and two hits with four walks over seven innings, but the Giants fell 3-2 on a suicide squeeze in the ninth.

Sanchez has had trouble locating the strike zone on the road, where he's issued 23 of his 34 walks.

He won his only career start against the Cardinals at Busch Stadium, allowing two hits with four walks and five strikeouts in five scoreless innings of the Giants' 8-2 victory on April 20, 2008.

He failed to register a decision in his home debut against the Cardinals. Sanchez yielded one run and four hits over five innings as the Giants went on to a 5-4 win in 12 on April 8.

After the teams split the first two games, Nate Schierholtz made the difference in San Francisco's 7-5, 11-inning win Wednesday.

His RBI single with two outs in the ninth made it 5-all. With one out in the 11th, Schierholtz drove in Freddy Sanchez with the go-ahead run and later scored on rookie Brandon Crawford's single.

REWIND: Shierholtz the hero in Giants win over Cardinals

"His playing time has increased and it will now with the game he had and the way he's been playing," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said of Schierholtz.

With two outs in the bottom of the inning, the game was delayed 16 minutes after two light standards failed. When play resumed, Brian Wilson needed one pitch to get Craig to ground out and notch his 15th save.

Schierholtz tied a season high with three hits, and Cody Ross had third four-hit game this season for the Giants.

Craig's two-run homer in the seventh inning off a struggling Tim Lincecum gave St. Louis a 5-4 lead. Jay struck out three times.

A's spring training Day 43: Shore K's Trout in surprise big league start

A's spring training Day 43: Shore K's Trout in surprise big league start

TEMPE, Ariz. — Rather than join his minor league teammates for workouts like usual, Logan Shore got word Tuesday morning he would take the ball for the A’s against the Los Angeles Angels.

A few hours later, Shore was striking out Mike Trout to highlight his impressive four-inning outing. What an experience it was for Shore, a right-hander drafted last summer in the second round out of the University of Florida.

“It’s pretty cool,” he said. “There’s not really any words to describe that.”

The A’s scratched No. 5 starter Raul Alcantara, opting to throw him in a minor league game rather than let a division opponent get another look at him for scouting-report purposes. That presented Shore with a surprise opportunity.

He responded with four innings of one-run ball, holding the Angels to two hits. The game would take an ugly turn as the A’s bullpen got lit up in a 14-3 loss. But Shore’s outing was a glimpse of what Oakland might have to look forward to with the 22-year-old. The righty didn’t come out of college with the same hype as Florida teammate A.J. Puk, who the A’s drafted sixth overall last June. But he’s thought to be more polished than Puk at this stage.

Shore went 0-2 with a 2.57 ERA in seven starts with short-season Vermont in his pro debut. This spring, he’s been grouped with high Single-A Stockton, but he hasn’t received his official regular-season assignment yet.

“That’s the kind of lineup that gets your attention a little bit,” manager Bob Melvin said. “I thought he threw the ball really well. He had great command of his fastball, a backdoor sinker, good changeup, good slider. He probably got a little bit tired at the end, but he was very impressive. That’s the first time I got to see him throw.”

Shore pitched in relief for the A’s earlier this spring as a minor league extra, so that helped him keep his nerves in check Tuesday. Still, it was a different challenge tackling what closely resembled the Angels’ regular-season lineup, which features Trout and Albert Pujols in the meat of it.

Trout struck out and flied to right against Shore. Pujols flied to right and singled.

“I grew up watching all those guys, so it’s kind of cool to get to pitch against them,” he said.

HEALTH UPDATES: Left fielder Khris Davis and third baseman Trevor Plouffe, both nursing minor injuries, won’t return to the field until the Bay Bridge Series which starts Thursday night at AT&T Park, Melvin said. Plouffe has missed the past few games with a groin injury and Davis has a right quad issue.

“We’ll just bubble wrap them right now and send them home,” Melvin cracked.

Right-hander Chris Bassitt took another step in his Tommy John recovery with a 30-pitch session that included two sets of 15 pitches, simulating two innings with a break in between.

NOTEWORTHY: The A’s play their Cactus League finale Wednesday on the road against the Cubs, but most of the game will feature minor leaguers. All of the players who are heading north to face the Giants will be leaving for the airport sometime in the latter stages of the game.

On that topic, the A’s announced the 43 players that will make up their Bay Bridge roster. It includes 30 players from the 40-man roster, six non-roster invitees and seven extras from minor league camp. Oakland officially has 36 players still in camp, with Saturday the deadline to cut down to the final 25-man roster.

ODDS AND ENDS: After Shore left the game, the Angels struck for five runs in the fifth against Liam Hendriks. … The next inning, highly touted prospect Grant Holmes gave up five runs (four earned) in two-thirds of an inning. Holmes was one of three righties acquired from the Dodgers in the Rich Hill/Josh Reddick trade. Jharel Cotton and Frankie Montas were the others.

 

Goodell reacts to suggestion Kaepernick is being 'blackballed'

Goodell reacts to suggestion Kaepernick is being 'blackballed'

PHOENIX – NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said Tuesday he does not believe quarterback Colin Kaepernick is being “blackballed” in his attempt to continue his career.

“I haven’t heard that from our clubs in any way that that’s an issue,” Goodell said during his press conference to conclude the NFL owners meetings.

“My experience in 35 years is that our clubs make independent evaluations of players. They work hard to try to improve their teams. But if they think a player can help improve their team, they’re going to do that.”

Kaepernick remains unsigned as an unrestricted free agent after opting out of his 49ers contract earlier this month. Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman this week was asked on ESPN’s "First Take" whether he felt Kaepernick was being blackballed.

"I'm sure he is," Sherman answered. "It's difficult to see because he's played at such a high level, and you see guys, quarterbacks, who have never played at a high level being signed by teams. So it's difficult to understand."

General manager John Lynch on Tuesday said the 49ers have not had any contact with Kaepernick since he and coach Kyle Shanahan met with Kaepernick on Feb. 22 in Santa Clara. The 49ers signed free-agent quarterbacks Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley have shown no interest in re-signing Kaepernick.

Kaepernick, 29, created a controversy last season when he opted to take a knee during the playing of the national anthem to protest racial inequality in the United States. Kaepernick has decided to stand for the national anthem this season.

Earlier in the day, Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh said it was “stupid” and “intellectually lazy” to think teams have colluded to keep Kaepernick out of the league. Last week, former 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh, John’s brother, said Kaepernick is still an outstanding player and can win championships.

“I absolutely think he’s going to get signed,” John Harbaugh said. “I agree with Jim. He can win games for people.”