EXTRA BAGGS: Long drive for Bumgarner, but no contract drive (yet)

676328.jpg

EXTRA BAGGS: Long drive for Bumgarner, but no contract drive (yet)

Madison Bumgarner said the Giants havent approached him yet on his contract for this season.

But Im told the Giants would have interest in doing a multiyear deal with Bumgarner, which would provide some cost certainty through his arbitration years.

That cost certainty will be extremely important to determine what the Giants budget will be in the next few seasons. And that will be extremely important soon, when Tim Lincecums long-term future will become a topic again. The club will need to know how much they can afford to commit and still be able to field a team around him.

Bumgarner and Buster Posey are among the players with less than three years of service time. Players in this group can be assigned any salary above the league minimum. The deadline to complete this process is usually in early March.

--

Bumgarner drove to spring training from his place in North Carolina, with his brother-in-law along for company. They did not make it a leisurely trip.

Two days, 35 hours you think its not that much fun, but we had a good time, he said.

They stopped one night in Weatherford, Okla., and the town was true to its name.

It was blowing snow the whole time, Bumgarner said. Going 35 the whole way through the panhandle

Yep, a good time was had by all.

-- Tim Lincecum threw fastballs and changeups in his bullpen session with Buster Posey. It was the third time Lincecum threw to Posey since they traveled to Arizona shortly after FanFest earlier this month.

We picked up where we left off, Lincecum said.

And thats good, since Lincecums last start with Posey was a three-hit shutout May 21 against the As.

Lincecum told a funny story about that start. He said he didnt feel he had the movement or location he wanted, but Posey kept encouraging him to trust his stuff. That faith made a difference.

I remember him after the last pitch, strike three, he gives me the ball, Lincecum said. And he said, Why arent you excited? I said I was still pissed because my stuff wasnt that good.

And pairing up together again Sunday? Its like having the old Posey back, Lincecum said.

--

During Lincecums session with reporters, someone mentioned that Jamie Moyer, all of 49 years young, signed with the Colorado Rockies. That bit of news had slipped past Lincecum this offseason.

Holy moly, he said.

Moyer was among the Mariners players that Lincecum, a Seattle-area native, enjoyed watching as a kid.

Could Lincecum envision pitching in the big leagues at 49?

Ha ha ha! Lincecum said. No.

--

John Bowker will forever be the answer to two trivia questions. The first: Who is the first Giant to homer in each of his first two big league games? (Bowker beat Brett Pill to it by three years.) The other: Who was the starting right fielder on opening day for the 2010 World Series champions?

OK, so Bowker didnt hold that job for long. But he absolutely made a contribution to the Giants title run. He went to Pittsburgh in what turned out to be a vitally important trade for left-hander Javier Lopez.

Bowker later ended up in Philly, and now hes back in a Giants uniform: A Tokyo Yomiuri Giants uniform, to be precise. Bowker signed with the Japanese League club earlier this month.

What a blast: Jae-gyun Hwang crushes homer in Giants' debut

What a blast: Jae-gyun Hwang crushes homer in Giants' debut

SAN FRANCISCO -- Before his MLB debut, Jae-gyun Hwang promised not to flip his bat in the big leagues. 

"I don't want to get hit by a pitch," he said, smiling. 

He didn't quite flip it, but Hwang had some fun when his first big league hit soared out to left field. The 29-year-old rookie crushed a solo shot in his third big league at-bat, giving the Giants a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the seventh.

Hwang got a 2-0 fastball from lefty Kyle Freeland and hit it 417 feet, with an exit velocity of 108 mph. He posed for a second before stylishly dropping his bat. Hwang pumped his fist when he reached the plate. He was greeted by a raucous dugout.

Hwang had driven in a run earlier in the game. He said the game was a big deal in South Korea, with television channels scrambling to broadcast the debut of a superstar who traveled overseas to live out his big league dream. It was 6:42 a.m. in Seoul when Hwang's blast landed.

Giants place Melancon on DL, make series of roster moves

Giants place Melancon on DL, make series of roster moves

SAN FRANCISCO -- Mark Melancon's outing Tuesday night was one of his best of a rough year. The momentum didn't last long. 

Melancon was placed on the disabled list Wednesday morning with the same right pronator strain that cost him 12 games in May. To help out a pitching staff that covered 14 innings Tuesday, the Giants called starter Dan Slania up from Double-A. 

Melancon struck out two in Tuesday's win. After a shaky start to his season, he has three straight scoreless outings, with just one hit allowed and three strikeouts. 

"He threw great last night, had good stuff," manager Bruce Bochy said. "But he showed up and he could really feel it (today). We need to get this behind us."

Bochy said he hopes Melancon is back when his 10 days on the DL are up, but that seems very, very optimistic. Melancon is going for an MRI, and given the team's record, there's no reason for him to rush back. 

In the meantime, Sam Dyson, designated for assignment by the Rangers just a few weeks ago, is the team's closer. Dyson has been sharp since coming to San Francisco and he threw well the previous two games. He is not expected to be available Wednesday because of the heavy recent workload. Hunter Strickland could fill in for a day. 

Slania, is a hulking 25-year-old right-hander who was added to the 40-man roster in the offseason after a big 2016. Listed at 6-foot-5, 275 pounds, Slania was moved from the bullpen to rotation last season and promptly posted a 1.48 ERA in 10 starts. He was promoted to Triple-A this season but struggled and was sent back to Richmond. Slania has a 6.44 ERA in 15 starts this year but the Giants were short on options. 

Tyler Beede, the likely first choice, threw eight innings for Sacramento on Monday and would not have been available today. Joan Gregorio is on the disabled list with a back injury that will cost him at least a month. Slania is here to help a tired bullpen, and it's likely another move will come this weekend, when the Giants also have to activate Eduardo Nuñez. For now, Bochy said the staff is hoping to get a look at Slania and see if there's a tweak that can be made at the big league level.