EXTRAS: Runzler update, Melkys monster spring

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EXTRAS: Runzler update, Melkys monster spring

Dan Runzler is on the shelf after aggravating his latissimusdorsi muscle, but said he is feeling better after receiving a platelet-richplasma treatment in San Francisco on Thursday.The initial timeframe of a return to throwing has been scaled back from threeto four weeks to two to three weeks.Before flying to San Francisco for the PRP treatment,Runzler visited noted surgeon Dr. James Andrews, who looked at Runzlers MRIsand determined that surgery wouldnt be necessary. Runzler went 1-2 with a 6.26 ERA last season and left the Giants final game ofthe regular season with a tear in his lat muscle.

--Maybe Melky Cabrera is hearing the peanut gallery callinghis 2011 breakout season a fluke.RELATED: Posey, Sanchez return; Giants beat Reds 6-3
After hitting .305 with 18 home runs and 87 RBIs with the Kansas City Royalslast season, he was shipped to San Francisco for Jonathan Sanchez. There isskepticism among media members and fans that he cant match his career yearnumbers from 2011.But Cabrera is off to a blazing hot start in the Cactus League, including histhird home run of the spring Friday. Cabrera took Reds righty Sam LeCure deep on a towering two-run shot way over theright-field fence in the 3rd inning.For the spring, Cabrera is hitting .588 with six RBIs and only one strikeout in17 at bats. --Brandon Belt was the only other Giant to homer against theReds, as he sent Chad Reinekes 3-1 pitch over the wall in right field in the 8thinning.It was Belts second shot of the springand upped his average to .389. Belt didnt get the start on Friday, butentered the game as a defensive replacement for Nate Schierholtz in right fieldin the 6th inning.Belt also flashed the leather in right, catching a sinking line drive off hisshoetops to rob Miguel Rojas of a hit in the 8th inning.
RELATED: Sanchez has quiet debut, may start at second base Monday
--The Giants have confirmed an earlier report of a one-yearagreement with Madison Bumgarner. The team also announced that they have agreedto terms on contracts for all 19 of their players with 0-to-3 years of servicetime. One such player is Buster Posey, who made 575,000 last season.--Heath Hembree had been perfect so far this spring heading into Fridays game,pitching two scoreless innings with two strikeouts.The hard-throwing closer-in-waiting allowed his first run of the spring againstthe Reds, as he was called upon in the ninth and gave up an RBI double toDaniel Dorn after issuing a one-out walk to Wilson Valdez.Hembree rebounded by striking out the next two batters to end the game and givethe Giants a 6-3 win.RELATED: Giants' Cain in midseason form after two spring starts
In his last outing, Hembrees velocity was reportedly down and it didnt liveup to the hype on Friday, either. While the 94-96 he hit Friday is nothing to laugh at, Hembree has made a namefor himself by living in the 98-100 range last season with San Jose andRichmond.--One last light note to close out the final post of the day from Scottsdale.After taking batting practice, Buster Posey walked back to the dugout to achorus of screaming kids asking for his autograph.Posey obliged and began to take sharpies, jerseys and baseballs from allangles.As he was signing, one young fan asked him Buster, why areyou so good?Before Posey could answer (as if he could come up with a humble response),another youngster handled the question for him: Because he just is

Latest round of bullpen auditions go poorly in Giants' 50th loss

Latest round of bullpen auditions go poorly in Giants' 50th loss

SAN FRANCISCO -- Practically speaking, the 50th loss is no different than the one before or the one after, but this sport is built on milestones, and this one came quickly.

The Giants lost their 50th game on August 12 last year. This season, it was clinched when Ryder Jones grounded out in his fourth career at-bat, handing the Mets a 5-2 win on June 24. 

Bruce Bochy called losing 50 of your first 77 games "hard to believe" and "embarrassing." Johnny Cueto, who went seven strong, said the reality was "hard and sad." Brandon Belt, who got Cueto off the hook for a loss, agreed with his manager.

"That's a pretty good word to use -- it is embarrassing to come out and lose every day, especially with the group of guys we have," Belt said. "When you're losing as much as this, it is embarrassing. We're trying to do whatever we can to turn this thing around."

Lately, that has meant changes to the roster. It is officially audition season, and in that respect, it was not a particularly inspiring day for the bullpen. The Giants felt they would have a better mix this year, but it hasn't played out. Instead, they're once again trying to find pieces for the next successful Giants bullpen.

With Hunter Strickland suspended and Derek Law in the minors, two young relievers, a middle-innings stalwart, and a newcomer pitched the final two frames. They gave up four runs.

Sam Dyson was the first on the mound in the eighth. Belt had homered a few minutes earlier, tying a good starter's duel. Dyson gave up a leadoff triple to Curtis Granderson and walked Asdrubal Cabrera before throwing two good sliders past Yoenis Cespedes for the strikeout. With two lefties coming up and the go-ahead run still on third, Bochy turned to Steven Okert. He immediately gave up a seeing-eye RBI single to Jay Bruce. Wilmer Flores doubled off George Kontos later in the frame to make it 3-1. 

In the ninth, Kyle Crick showed some of the wildness that kept him in the minors for seven years. He, too, gave up a leadoff triple, a sin you always pay for. A walk helped put another run into scoring position and a wild pitch extended the Mets’ lead to four. 

Before the game, Bochy talked of getting an extended look at Jones. He was 0-for-4 in his first big league game but he’ll be back out there tomorrow. It’s time to fight for a job, and the same holds true of some relievers who didn’t fare well Saturday. It is a group with a closer locked into a longterm deal and little else decided. 

Are Strickland or Law eighth-inning guys? Will Dyson be a worthwhile reclamation project? Will Kontos be back, and will he carve out a different role? Are Okert and Josh Osich capable of giving Bochy lefties he trusts? Is Crick’s improvement in Triple-A a sign of things to come? There are many questions to be answered over the next three months. 

“This is a good time for them, this is what players get up here for, to show what they can do,” Bochy said. “Because of our situation, we’re going to take a look at these guys and we know there are going to be growing pains.”

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from Giants' 50th loss of the season

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from Giants' 50th loss of the season

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SAN FRANCISCO — The promotion of an intriguing prospect can bring a certain buzz to the ballpark. It didn’t last long. 

The debut of Ryder Jones came in the latest flat performance from the Giants, who collapsed late and fell 5-2 to the Mets. The loss was their 50th of the season. They did not lose their 50th game last season until August 12. 

With the score tied in the eighth, Curtis Granderson crushed a leadoff triple into the alley. Sam Dyson walked the next batter and then whiffed Yoenis Cespedes, but Jay Bruce greeted Steven Okert with an RBI single to right. It kept going poorly from there. 

Here are five things to know from a cool day by the water … 

—- Jones grounded out to second in his first at-bat and then flied out to center, grounded out to first, and grounded out to second. He had one chance in the field, starting a double play that ended the second inning.  

—- Johnny Cueto seems to have turned a corner. Over his past two starts, he has allowed just three earned runs over 14 innings. Whether they trade him or not, the Giants certainly could use a nice little hot streak for the next six weeks. 

—- A few seconds after Bruce Bochy shook Cueto’s hand, Brandon Belt got him off the hook for a loss. He hit the first pitch of the bottom of the seventh into the seats in left-center, tying the game. The homer was Belt’s 14th. He’s on pace for 29. 

—- The Mets got eight one-run innings out of Jacob deGrom, who is quietly the most reliable of a star-studded rotation. He struck out seven and gave up just four hits. 

—- If Madison Bumgarner wants another Silver Slugger Award, he’ll have to chase down deGrom, who hit a homer in his last start. His single in the third was his 10th hit, and he finished the day with a .294 average.