EXTRAS: Sandoval's weight isn't a hefty issue

February 21, 2012, 11:21 pm
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SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Pablo Sandoval arrived in camp with a tighter haircutTuesday. He looked a little trimmer everywhere else, too.He didnt tell anyone what he is registering on the scalethese days, but weight is like age. Its only a number.Yes, the Giants must keep tabs on Sandoval. Yes, he mustcontinue to work out and keep from overindulging. His weight will always be anissue to monitor closely.But its getting overblown.
Even when Sandoval put on at least 10 to 20 pounds lastsummer, it made no noticeable difference in the way he played. He was stilldiving for grounders at third base. His last at-bat had all the energy of hisfirst. He wasnt the same hopelessly out-of-shape player in 2010 who wouldcollapse breathless, hands on knees, after taking a dozen ground balls.Two winters ago, he went through an intensive conditioningprogram for the first time and he didnt just melt off 38 pounds. He also addedmuscle while increasing his flexibility, balance and coordination. He carrieshimself with more confidence because hes a real athlete for the first time.Ive spoken with Ethan Banning, head trainer with TripleThreat Performance, and he told me Sandoval has been even more intensive withhis six-a-week, two-a-day workouts in recent weeks. He did spend a little moretime in Venezuela than he did the previous winter, but hes been able to buildon the foundation that he already created for himself.So after all those hours in the gym, its understandable if Sandoval is starting to get snippyat questions about his weight. By this stage, Id imagine anyone would be.--Ryan Vogelsong was feeling much better and back in campafter his 24-hour flu bug. Hes still expected to miss at least 10 days withhis strained lower back.--Angel Pagan also arrived at his locker today. So did FreddySanchez, who has been doing agility drills, hitting and throwing most of theoffseason here in Scottsdale.Sanchez still hasnt done any throwing besides playingcatch. He hasnt taken infield, other than just picking up ground balls. Hestill hasnt thrown to bases, let alone try to turn the pivot on a double play.Manager Bruce Bochy wasnt sure if that would be in thecards for Sanchez on Friday, when the club has its first full-squad workout. "Itll be pretty close, Bochy said.Expect Sanchez to DH in the first week of spring games, atleast.--Buster Posey returned to full activities and caught BarryZito, then Jeremy Affeldt off a mound. Nothing like a scud-throwing Affeldt togive Posey a good test.Posey and the catchers also practiced swipe tags afterfielding throws hit by fungo-wielding coaches from the outfield. Bochy ledthis portion of the proceedings. As you know, the Giants dont want Posey toblock the plate and theyll make sure those swipe tags become second nature.That doesnt mean they can protect him from all danger.Remember, he wasnt blocking the plate when Scott Cousins plowed into him.--Jeremy Affeldt joined us Monday night on Chronicle Live. Asa thank you, a producer gave him a gift certificate to The House of Prime Rib.Attention, wait staff: Do the Giants a favor and cut hismeat for him, OK?

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