EXTRA BAGGS: Why isn't Posey catching Timmy?

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EXTRA BAGGS: Why isn't Posey catching Timmy?

Programming note: Rockies-Giants coverage kicks off tonight at 6:30 p.m. with Giants Pregame Live, only on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area!

SAN FRANCISCO Call it the Case of the Curious Batterymate.

The burning topic on the pregame show continues to be TimLincecum, Buster Posey and why they aren't working together from a distance of 60 feet, 6 inches.

Once again Tuesday night, Lincecum worked with backup catcher Hector Sanchez. The situation is beyond curious for the faithful and those who cover the team, and its only going to amplify with the national press as we beginto speculate about things like postseason rosters, lineups and the like.

RELATED: Lincecum edging closer to readiness

I really cant tell you if there is some kind of riftbetween Lincecum and Posey, but its pretty clear that this goes much deeperthan Bochys explanation that hes trying to keep his cleanup hitter fresh.

If I had to speculate, knowing their personalities a bit,this is what Id tell you:

Posey has always struck me as a honor-roll student, someone who pores over and follows thescouting reports, and wants to pitch to each hitters weaknesses. Lincecum, as we know, ismore about jazz improvisation on the mound, finding his own way whiledetermining what pitches are working on a given night. Maybe those twoapproaches can be less than compatible at times.

Sanchez, we know, has more of a lets go get em mentality when he straps on the shinguards. Lincecum draws energy from an animated presence behind the plate. And if Lincecum hadnt been able to establish a rapport with the young catcher, Bochy wouldnt have the choice. He'd have to pair Posey withhis two-time Cy Young Award winner.

"Its a great point, Bochy said. Hector is doing a nicejob throwing and receiving and calling the game. I think theyre compatiblewith each other and thats one reason lately youve seen Hector back there forthe most part.

Lincecum, both publicly and privately, has vowed that he hasno issue with Posey catching him. Posey has said there is no problem on his end, either. Both players have trustworthy reputations.

While it's unfair to read anything beyond his words, Lincecum offers nothing but praise for Sanchez.

He has a knack for what Im going to go to, Lincecum said.Ive beaten the (stuffing) out of him at times and he keeps going back thereand catching. Hes doing a great job for myself and for the team.

One other issue that looms for postseason play: We've seen that Sanchez iswilling to station himself in front of the plate with a runner bearing down onhim. Posey, under orders from above, stands well into fair territory when hereceives the ball and then tries to reach back with a swipe tag. The Giantshave allowed probably a half-dozen runs this season out of an abundance ofcaution -- understandable, to be sure, given Poseys catastrophic collision last year that left him unable towalk for four months.

But will that devil's bargain extend into the postseason?

In the playoffs, one run can make all the difference. Everygame in the 2010 NLDS against Atlanta, for instance, was a one-run affair. Sothat might be one more reason Bochy will give thought to having Sanchez catchLincecum andor Barry Zito in the postseason, and put Posey at first base.

We'll have to wait and see.

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Angel Pagan tied and broke Willie Maysfranchise record for triples on the last road trip.

On Tuesday night, he got a taste of what it might have feltand sounded like if hed done it at home.

Pagan extended his own San Francisco-era franchise record inthe eighth inning when he hit his 14th triple, and the selloutcrowd met the moment with a standing ovation. Pagan tipped his helmet toacknowledge it.

Oh definitely, a special moment for me at least to get onemore in front of them, said Pagan, who has hit seven of his triples atAT&T Park and seven on the road. Theyve shown me a lot of support, so Idedicate it to them.

Pagans helmet tip was a nice gesture. But plate umpireAngel Hernandez thought less of the way Pagan flipped his bat high in the airafter striking out on a called pitch to end a rally in the sixth inning.

Hernandez told Pagan that he drew a fine for an equipmentviolation, but Pagan misunderstood and thought he had been ejected. Giantsmanager Bruce Bochy rushed out as the conversation became animated, trying toensure his center fielder wouldnt actually draw the thumb.

He was animated but he just wanted to talk it out, Bochysaid. He didnt realize it (the equipment violation) was automatic. Hesintense. He just thought it was unfair. He was upset at himself, not the call.

Said Pagan: I flipped my bat and was going to flip myhelmet and go to center field. I wasnt showing anybody up.

Maybe he didnt realize he flipped his bat so high in theair.

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Gregor Blanco came off the bench and hit a double. He alsoplayed catch in the outfield. Hes good to start, and Xavier Nady had a nicegame as well. So consider that left field platoon an active situation.

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Posey thrilled by WBC experience, says he would play again in 2021

Posey thrilled by WBC experience, says he would play again in 2021

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Before he left camp on March 6, Buster Posey was telling teammates and team officials that his involvement in the World Baseball Classic was a one-and-done deal. On Friday, Posey returned to camp with a new outlook.

"It's a great tournament," Posey said. "If you were able to do it in the actual Olympics, it would be even better. I just don't know how to do that other than shutting down the season. But after playing in this tournament, I would be up for that.

"If I had a chance to do it again, I think I would. If you had asked me that three weeks ago, I would have said I don't think I would. That's how much fun I had."

Posey, Brandon Crawford and Mark Melancon were greeted by one teammate after another Friday morning, many of them fellow Americans congratulating the group on helping lead Team USA to its first WBC title. Posey and Crawford, who missed most of March, had kept in touch with teammates via text, and some who reached out said they often got the same message back: "If you have a chance to do this, don't pass it up."

Posey and Crawford will be hitting their mid 30s the next time around. It's no lock that they're still in position to play, but they made the most of their experience this month. Crawford had 10 hits and played his usual stellar defense, earring new fans who don't watch his Gold Glove on a nightly basis. Posey hit a pair of long home runs in four starts. 

Most importantly, both of them returned healthy and ready to play Friday.

"I'm ready for some Cactus League!" Posey said, laughing.

Despite being gone for nearly three weeks, Posey hasn’t actually played that much this month. He started half of Team USA’s games but he was on the bench for the title game. He said that didn’t bother him. Manager Jim Leyland talked to Posey and Jonathan Lucroy before the tournament.

“Of course, as a competitor, you want to be in that game, but Lucroy is a great catcher and he did a great job with (Marcus) Stroman and the rest of the staff,” Posey said. “You can’t go wrong with having him out there.”

Asked if there was one player he enjoyed getting to know, Posey chose Lucroy, saying he has played against him for a long time but never really gotten to know him. He noted how sharp Luke Gregerson's two-seamer was from behind the plate and said he enjoyed catching Pat Neshek and Stroman. 

Team USA grew close over the course of the month, and got better and better as the tournament wore on. Posey said the foreign fans at the early games in Miami helped get the juices flowing, and once the action moved to San Diego, there were loud American fans joining the fray. Team USA defeated the Dominican Republic to get out of that round (Posey hugged Johnny Cueto on Friday morning and chanted “USA! USA!” as he walked off) and then beat Japan in the semis.

Wednesday night’s championship came via a blowout of Puerto Rico. Posey has won at every level, but the moment was not lost on him.

“It’s cliche but there is a certain amount of pride when you have your country’s name on your chest,” he said. “It’s a vibe you get. A lot of us come from different parts of the country and you get to go out and play the game the way you played as a child. It’s America’s pastime, and it was a fun tournament and experience. That made it fun to win it.”

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.