Amy G's Giants Xclusive -- Marco Scutaro


Amy G's Giants Xclusive -- Marco Scutaro

Amy: You are looking at the newest Giant but certainly not a new face in baseball. Marco and I go way back to 2006 and 2007 and I have to say its really nice to see you back in the Bay Area. Is it nice for you to be back in the Bay, Marco?

Marco: Yeah, no doubt. I mean I really have fun here in the Bay Area. Four years Ive been with Oakland so Im here with the Giants now and were in first place and have a great opportunity to be in the playoffs.

A: Lets go back to Friday night. We get the news that theyve traded for you. Whats your initial reaction? Youve been traded to a first place team in N.L. West.

MS: It was actually after the game on Friday so as soon as the GM told me, Marco, I need to talk to you, I just kind of figured. I just asked him, Where am I going? So, he told me San Francisco and I said, Oh, all right. Then all the thoughts start going into your head, stuff like family, where youre going to move, all this stuff, you have to pack. But, you know, its part of my job and Im happy to be here.

A: Did it help at all that you had been in the Bay Area before seasons prior to that so you kind of knew the area at least?

MS: Yeah, it does, definitely. Its different when you have already been in a place than if you havent. I kind of know what to expect. I played here a lot when I worked with the As so I am kind of familiar with this. Its cool.

A: So, lets talk about your role on the team as the starting third baseman, while Pablo is out on the D.L. When I covered you, you were an every day short stop but third base isnt an unfamiliar spot for you. How different is it to go from third to short or second and how do you plan on helping the team?

MS: Well, I havent played it in awhile but I guess you just have to get used to it. The biggest difference is the bat angle from third base but Im just here to do whatever they ask me to do. Im just here to try and help this team and try to do my job. I mean stay on my game, try to get on base, score runs just do those things that help teams win games.

A: You were with Colorado so youve played against the Dodgers but is it different playing against the Dodgers in a Giants uniform? Did you get a taste of the rivalry yesterday in your first game?

MS: Yeah, I kind of felt that. Its always nice to have those kinds of games like that. Its good for fans, its good for baseball, its good for everybody.

A: Youre from Venezuela. If memory serves correct, is dad Italian?

MS: Yeah, my dad is from Italy and my mom is from Spain.

A: So, no one is Venezuelan except you, really?

MS: Yeah, I was born in Venezuela, so yeah.

A: But you have several countrymen on the team with Hector, who is not here right now, and Pablo. Is it kind of nice to catch up with some guys from home?

M: Yeah, its always nice to see guys from your country. You know, I can already tell there are a bunch of good guys here and its exciting to be here.

Giants spring training Day 39: Nuñez receives pair of cortisone shots

Giants spring training Day 39: Nuñez receives pair of cortisone shots

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Buster Posey and Brandon Crawford will return to camp Thursday, show off their WBC championship medals, and then head to nearby Salt River Fields to take on the Colorado Rockies. It'll be a few more days, however, before the Giants have their full infield on the field. 

Eduardo Nuñez said he actually got two cortisone shots in his right shoulder, since an MRI this week showed “something” in two separate spots. Nuñez asked for the MRI because, while he was able to play and make strong throws, he felt pain on a daily basis. He might DH this weekend, but it'll be a few more days before he's cleared to begin throwing. 

The Giants are hopeful that the shots calm all this down, and Nuñez anticipated being ready for Opening Day. Still, it certainly sounds like this will be a close call. Conor Gillaspie, who is having a huge spring, could get plenty of early time at third. Manager Bruce Bochy doesn't anticipate Nuñez missing Opening Day.

"He should be ready," Bochy said. 

The Giants need all the good injury news they can get. It is expected that Will Smith will announce Friday that he's having Tommy John surgery. 

ICYMI: From this morning, a feature on George Kontos and his rise over the last few years. 

Also, one of the bench candidates, Gordon Beckham, asked for his release. The Giants will soon have to make decisions on Hill and David Hernandez, who have similar retention bonuses due March 28.

GAME RECAP: The Giants played one of their uglier games of the spring, losing 9-2 to King Felix and the Mariners … Matt Moore lasted just 1 2/3 innings, giving up four runs on four hits, two walks, a balk and a wild pitch. It was the same old thing: Moore just all of a sudden lost his command, and because he got up past the 30-pitch mark in the second inning alone, the Giants cut it off. Moore went down to the bullpen and got up to around 80 pitches. He'll make one more start down here, Tuesday against the Cubs ... Joe Panik had a hard double, one of just four hits for the Giants … Chris Marrero hasn’t played a whole lot of left field this spring, and he didn’t show much to the coaches on a couple of opportunities to throw home. The left field situation remains a mystery. 

POSITION BATTLES: Kelby Tomlinson played six innings of left field in a minor league game, and he had to wait until the sixth to get his first and only fly ball. There seemed to be a lot of interest from decision-makers about how Tomlinson fared, and his action today opens up an intriguing possibility. There’s a roster permutation that has the Giants keeping just one reserve outfielder (Gorkys Hernandez) and three backup infielders: Conor Gillaspie, Aaron Hill and Kelby Tomlinson, with the latter two being options in left field. 

FAMILIAR FACE: Angel Pagan made it through the WBC healthy, and he apparently is drawing interest from the Phillies and Blue Jays. Giants people are confident Pagan will get a big league job somewhere over the coming week. 

Giants reliever Will Smith leaning toward season-ending Tommy John surgery

Giants reliever Will Smith leaning toward season-ending Tommy John surgery

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Left-hander Will Smith, a key piece of a revamped bullpen, is leaning toward having Tommy John surgery, manager Bruce Bochy said Thursday night. 

Bochy said surgery was the recommendation of both doctors who examined Smith's elbow this week. Smith will talk to his agent before coming to a final decision on Friday. The procedure would keep Smith out the entire 2017 season and likely would cause him to miss the start of the 2018 season.

Smith, 27, missed the first month of camp because of pain in his throwing elbow. He returned March 17, but during a March 20 outing he again felt pain and called for a trainer. A second round of diagnostics revealed a strain and a sprain in the elbow. Smith saw team orthopedist Dr. Ken Akizuki in San Francisco and flew to Los Angeles this week to get a second opinion from Dr. Neal ElAttrache of the Kerlen-Jobe Clinic. 

"They had the same opinion," Bochy said. "There is a tear there. You can try to rehab it and if that doesn't work you're behind a couple of months ... It's not a definite he's going to have it done, but two doctors are in agreement on what this is."

Smith was expected to serve as the late lefty for the Giants, getting setup work in the seventh and eighth innings. With Smith out, the Giants will lean on young lefties Steven Okert, Josh Osich and Ty Blach. 

"We're going to have to have someone step up and help us in the seventh and eighth," Bochy said. "That was going to be will's role. He's a guy we were leaning on."

Smith was acquired from the Brewers at the deadline last season in exchange for right-hander Phil Bickford (who is currently serving a 50-game suspension) and catcher Andrew Susac (who is currently injured). After a shaky start, he finished the regular season with 18 consecutive scoreless appearances. 

The Giants have for the most part avoided Tommy John for 40-man roster pitchers. Hunter Strickland, Derek Law and Josh Osich have all had it during their time in the organization, along with outfielder Mac Williamson. Prospect Ian Gardeck is currently recovering from Tommy John. The last Giants pitcher who was likely headed for the roster before having Tommy John was left-hander Eric Surkamp. He had surgery in 2012.

The timetable is different for every pitcher, but the general consensus is that the procedure sidelines a pitcher for at least a year, and usually closer to 16 months. Matt Moore, Thursday night’s starter, had Tommy John on April 23, 2014. He did not return to a big league mound until July 2, 2015, and even then, he was under restrictions. 

Smith is under team control for two more seasons after this one.