EXTRAS: Sandoval anticipating fine from fashion police, etc.


EXTRAS: Sandoval anticipating fine from fashion police, etc.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Second only to performing, Bay Area athletes place great importance on looking good, no matter the consequences.


Brian Wilson wore his All-Star Game cleats in 2010 and was fined because they weren't fifty-fifty black and orange. He was infamous for taking a sharpie to them to get them in compliance with the uniform regulations.

Michael Crabtree and the entire 49ers receiving corps welcomed fines when they wore all white socks in their memorable 2011 season.

Pablo Sandoval, you're up.

Sandoval took a page from Wilson's book and donned his flashy All-Star Game cleats during the Giants' 5-1 win on Orange Friday. The cleats are roughly fifty-fifty orange and gold -- not even close to the league stipulation that cleats must match the team jerseys -- and are likely going to cost Sandoval.

"It's like 1,000 for the fine," Sandoval estimated. Or maybe he didn't. Sandoval said he's received a similar fine before. Last season he wore his all white All-Star Game cleats and was docked pay.

He's anticipating a repeat offense, but it didn't seem to bother him, saying he felt good in them, it was Orange Friday, and they brought him good luck.

Sandoval finished the game 1-for-4 with a triple and a run scored.

'Pen changing?

Bochy shied from a concrete answer about how he plans to treat the ninth inning going forward, but when prodded, he acknowledged that we "are seeing a little change."

"With Sergio (Romo) throwing the ball so well, if he has an easy eighth like he did, there's a good chance he will start the ninth."

RELATED: 'Good baseball' earns complete win

It's a bit of a departure from the stereotypical role of the closer, but then again, when have these Giants been stereotypical about anything?

Bigger, badder curveball

If Madison Bumgarner's curveball looked a bit different Friday night, you are very observant.

"I've been talking with (Jeremy) Affeldt," Bumgarner said. "He's got a really good curveball. We've been working on some stuff.

"We made a little adjustment, and it made it a whole lot better."

Bumgarner's tighter slider is still in his repertoire, but the addition of a larger breaking pitch could take the young lefty to the next level -- especially if he keeps it down like he did Friday.

Greg White

Gregor Blanco didn't play Friday night, but with right-handed pitcher Lucas Harrell going for the Astros Saturday and Justin Christian going 0-for-4 in the leadoff spot Friday, Blanco is likely to start Game 2 against Houston.

The backs of Blanco's cleats are embroidered, the left reading "Greg," the right reading "White."

Giants lineup: Panik leading off in series opener vs Cubs


Giants lineup: Panik leading off in series opener vs Cubs

Bruce Bochy and Joe Maddon issued their lineups for today's series opener in Chicago:

Giants (19-26)
1. Joe Panik (L) 2B
2. Christian Arroyo (R) 3B
3. Brandon Belt (L) 1B
4. Buster Posey (R) C
5. Brandon Crawford (L) SS
6. Eduardo Nunez (R) LF
7. Justin Ruggiano (R) RF
8. Gorkys Hernandez (R) CF
9. Ty Blach (R) P (1-2, 4.15 ERA)

Cubs (22-20) 
1. Ben Zobrist (S) LF
2. Albert Almora Jr. (R) CF
3. Kris Bryant (R) 3B
4. Anthony Rizzo (L) 1B
5. Willson Contreras (R) C
6. Addison Russell (R) SS
7. Jason Heyward (L) RF
8. Javier Baez (R) 2B
9. John Lackey (R) P (4-3, 4.37 ERA)

Former Giants top prospect earns first career MLB win with Twins

Former Giants top prospect earns first career MLB win with Twins


MINNEAPOLIS -- Adalberto Mejia made the most of his brief stint back in the majors with the Minnesota Twins by getting his first big-league win.

Robbie Grossman, Max Kepler and Chris Gimenez all homered to help Mejia and the Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 8-4 in the second game Sunday to salvage a split of a doubleheader.

Mejia (1-1) was the Twins' 26th active player for the second game and allowed three runs in seven innings, on two home runs by Salvador Perez - who also went deep in the first game.

Mejia's reward for his first win? A trip back to Triple-A Rochester.

"I'm going to go down there and work on the things they told me work on," Mejia said through interpreter Carlos Font. "Then it will be up to them to see when I get back."

Grossman and Kepler each hit two-run homers in the first inning, and Brian Dozier had an RBI double in the second off Ian Kennedy (0-4) in his first game back from the disabled list.

Brandon Moss hit two of Kansas City's four home runs in the opener of the doubleheader, and Perez and Jorge Bonifacio each hit two-run homers to lead the Royals to a 6-4 win earlier in the day.

With the split, the Twins are now 7-1 on the year against the Royals. Kansas City's win in the first game snapped a seven-game losing streak against Minnesota.

Kennedy, who returned after missing time with a hamstring strain, said he felt fine physically. He walked three batters and gave up a pair of two-run homers in just two innings Sunday.

"He was way out of whack," manager Ned Yost said. "His leg was fine. He felt normal, felt good. Just timing was off, rhythm was off."


Mike Minor's road back to the majors was not an easy one. Shoulder surgery kept him out of the majors for two years and resulted in a move to the bullpen.

Minor got his first victory since 2014 with 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief in the first game Sunday. He relieved Jake Junis with a 5-2 lead in the fifth, two outs and two on. The 29-year-old left-hander walked Max Kepler, then retired Kennys Vargas on a popup. Minor retired the side in order in the sixth.

Minor had surgery to repair a torn labrum in his pitching shoulder in May 13, 2015, and did not appear in the major leagues in 2015 and 2016. Minor, who signed a $7.25 million, two-year contract with the Royals in February 2016, got his first major league victory since Aug. 28, 2014, for Atlanta.


Kansas City's Jake Junis, a 24-year-old right-hander, was recalled from Triple-A Omaha and made his first big league start after a pair of relief appearances. He allowed two runs, five hits and four walks in 4 2/3 innings, leaving after RBI singles from Brian Dozier and Miguel Sano.

Junis found out Saturday that he would be making his first career start. He didn't pitch deep enough to get the win, but impressed manager Ned Yost before the Royals optioned Junis back to Omaha after the game.

"I thought he did a nice job," Yost said. "We tried to get him through that fifth inning, but we needed to win this game."


Kansas City left fielder Alex Gordon missed the second game to join his wife, who is due to give birth on Monday. Infielder Raul Mondesi replacing Gordon on the roster but was optioned to Triple-A Omaha after the game. That means LHP Miguel Almonte, initially the Royals' 26th active player Sunday, remains on the 25-man roster. ... RHP Al Alburquerque was designated for assignment to make room on the roster for Junis.


Royals: RHP Nate Karns had his pitching arm evaluated after Friday's start against Minnesota. Manager Ned Yost said fluid was found in the elbow area but Karns does not have a strain. Karns exited his start Friday after five innings and threw just 72 pitches due to stiffness in his arm.

Twins: RHP Phil Hughes was placed on the 10-day disabled list Sunday with shoulder discomfort. Hughes took the loss in the first game of Sunday's doubleheader. Right-hander Kyle Gibson will take Hughes' place on the roster.


Royals: LHP Jason Vargas (5-2, 2.03 ERA) starts Monday's series opener at the New York Yankees.

Twins: RHP Kyle Gibson (0-4, 8.20 ERA) will be recalled from Triple-A Rochester to start Monday against Baltimore.