EXTRA BAGGS: Waiting out the blob, Beltran has MRI, etc.

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EXTRA BAGGS: Waiting out the blob, Beltran has MRI, etc.

BOX SCORE

ST. LOUIS Just like every other day, Buster Posey put onhis gear and walked out to the bullpen to warm up his starting pitcherWednesday night.

More than sixhours later, Posey walked to the bullpen again.

Lefty reliever Javier Lopez needed to heat up again after arain delay nearly long enough to knock out a viewing of Dances With Wolves.

That was a little bit different, Posey said. Havent donethat before.

Assuming they didnt hold a Kevin Costner film appreciationnight, how exactly did the Giants wait out that three-hour 28-minute delay?

A lot of sitting, Posey said. I walked to the kitchen. Iwalked to the training room. I walked to the bathroom. and sat some more.

The Giants knew that if the approaching storm -- a blob on the Doppler big enough to scare Steve McQueen -- hit duringthe game, the delay would be a lengthy one.

So we tried to relax, Posey said. Youll go nuts ifyoure on the bike or moving around all the time. You just try to keep it looseand not sit here and think too much.

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Matt Cain had plenty of time with his thoughts. The lastaction in the Giants 3-1 loss in Game 3 was manager Bruce Bochy, walking totake the baseball from Cain in the seventh inning after the Cardinals added arun on an RBI groundout.

But Cain probably didnt need much time to script hispostgame comments. Hes stood at his locker so many times after pitching welland having nothing to show for it.

That was probably the best Ive felt in three starts, saidCain, and yes, that makes it all the more damaging that the Giants offensefailed to seize this potentially pivotal game.

Cain said he wanted to throw his 2-2 slider down and in toMatt Carpenter, but missed over the plate and paid for it. Carpenter, whoreplaced an injured Carlos Beltran, hit a two-run home run that erased theGiants 1-0 lead.

With him out, yeah, you try to take advantage of it and Ididnt do a good job of it, Cain said. What (Beltran) has done in thepostseason is tremendous. I just didnt make a pitch.

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Beltran left during the game for an MRI on his left knee andthe St. Louis Post Dispatch reported that results were negative. Beltran wasdealing with a sore hand, too.

It would be karma, or something, if Beltran werentavailable for part or all of the remaining games, since the Giants plunged fromfirst place while he was out with a hand injury in August of last season.

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Marco Scutaro did not look the slightest bit impaired twodays after getting steamrolled by Matt Hollidays takeout slide at second base.Scutaro did opt to get the force at first base after looking home on that RBIgrounder in the seventh.

I thought that was the right decision. It wouldve beenbang-bang at the plate, the ball was wet and a bad throw couldve turned thatinning into a disaster.

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I thought the Giants had a safety squeeze on when Cainfouled off a first bunt attempt in the fourth inning. But Cain said that wasntthe case. Gregor Blanco might have dashed off third base, but he only wouldve continuedhome if the ball got away or something strange happened.

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The Giants only made Jason Motte throw 19 pitches whileconverting the first six-out save of his career. That means the Cardinalscloser should be available for Game 4.

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Before losing Wednesday night, the Giants were 9-2 on theroad in postseason play since 2010.

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I can imagine the first lines of Adam Wainwrights scoutingreport on the Giants for Game 4 goes something like this:

Dont let Posey beat you.

Maybe in all caps, 48-point font.

Giants use big fifth, sixth innings to take down Cubs

Giants use big fifth, sixth innings to take down Cubs

BOX SCORE

At Scottsdale, Arizona, Giants starter Matt Cain gave up two runs — one earned — and three hits over two innings.

New Giants closer Mark Melancon tossed a 1-2-3 third inning in his first outing. Cain threw 40 pitches and Justin Ruggiano had an RBI double in a three-run fifth.

Javier Baez went 2 for 3 with an RBI double.

Giants spring training Day 13: Cain goes two; Melancon has perfect debut

Giants spring training Day 13: Cain goes two; Melancon has perfect debut

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Bruce Bochy planned to give most of his pitchers one-inning stints during the first weekend of spring ball, but Matt Cain stretched it out to 40 pitches on Saturday. 

“I’ve had enough days off the past couple of years,” Cain said, smiling.

In his first start of a crucial spring, Cain threw two innings. He was charged with three hits and two runs, just one of them earned. 

“He’s in a good place right now with his arm strength,” Bochy said. “His delivery is consistent. I’m glad he got a lot of work today, to be honest. It’s something he needs as much as anybody on this staff, is work. He’s going to get it.”

Ty Blach, Cain’s biggest competition for the fifth starter spot, gave up four hits and one earned in his two innings. Neither pitcher was hit particularly hard, and both suffered a bit from iffy defense in the early innings of an 8-6 win over the Cubs. 

The inning separating Cain and Blach was notable for other reasons. Mark Melancon made his Giants debut, getting two groundouts and a fly to right in a quick inning. Melancon received a nice ovation, and he noted the opponent — a Cubs team that helped guarantee the Giants would spend big on a closer — but he didn’t put any added importance on the outing. 

“It doesn’t matter what I do out there right now,” he said. 

Melancon’s new teammates might disagree. Spring or not, the Giants certainly enjoyed watching a closer breeze through his inning. Especially against the Cubs. 

“He’s a pro,” Bochy said. “He’s going to be out there working on stuff, his command and pitches. It was good for Buster (Posey) to catch him. It was a good day for him.”

NOTABLE: On his first swing of the spring, Posey threw his bat up against the visiting dugout. It can only go uphill from there … Bryan Morris had a scoreless debut, striking out one … Josh Osich ran into some trouble in the eighth and gave up a pair of runs, but Bochy appreciated the way he fought his way out of the frame … Former Giants prospect Chris Dominguez started for the Cubs at first base. He had a couple of hits ... If you're headed to Goodyear for tomorrow's game, Joe Panik, Brandon Belt, Conor Gillaspie, Jimmy Rollins, Mac Williamson, Jarrett Parker, Gorkys Hernandez and Trevor Brown will start behind Matt Moore. Also, if you're headed to Goodyear, I'm sorry. 

TRAINER’S ROOM: Eduardo Nuñez is limited to DH duty for now because of a sore throwing shoulder. Nuñez said the tightness popped up after some work in the weight room, but he’s not concerned at all. He said he would have played third base if Saturday’s game was a regular season contest. The Giants expect him in the field sometime next week. 

Nuñez also said it took five weeks after the season ended for his hamstring to get back to 100 percent, so apparently that injury was much worse than it first looked. Nuñez was out on the field before every NLDS game, trying to get clearance to return. He never quite got there. 

Will Smith (elbow) is just a day or two from throwing off flat ground, Bochy said. 

CUETO UPDATE: The Giants had hoped to have Johnny Cueto in camp this weekend, but he remains in Boca Chica, Dominican Republic. Cueto is waiting for a visa for his ill father, Domingo, who will travel to Scottsdale with Johnny. 

LIGHTER SIDE: Brandon Crawford spent a couple of minutes learning some of Jeff Samardzija’s mound moves. The impersonation is pretty solid.