Giants Game 3 NLDS lineup: Status quo

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Giants Game 3 NLDS lineup: Status quo

Programming note: Tune in to Giants Pregame Live today at 1:30 p.m. for complete coverage from Cincinnati right up until game time, only on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area!CINCINNATI Reds manager Dusty Baker has no reason to tinker after his club whalloped the Giants twice at AT&T Park. Hes going with the same 1-through-8 lineup in Game 3. So is Giants manager Bruce Bochy.In fact, Bochy felt lineup continuity was so important that he plans to keep the same group together in Game 4, too and that means having Buster Posey catch Barry Zito, allowing Brandon Belt to stay at first base.Bochy told beat reporters that Posey would get the start behind the plate with Zito in a potential Game 4 on Wednesday, even though the left-hander has been paired with Hector Sanchez in all but a handful of his starts this season.RELATED: Giants-Reds NLDS Game 3 -- Matchup notes
But first, the Giants must win behind Ryan Vogelsong to extend this NL Division Series. Tuesday nights game is a rematch from April 26 , when Vogelsong and right-hander Homer Bailey ended up taking no decisions because Angel Pagan erased a two-run deficit with a three-run home run in the ninth off Reds lefty Sean Marshall.Marshall, who was the Reds closer at the time, hadnt blown a save before that.The Giants would prefer not to rely on another bolt from the blue to win. Theyd rather score early and grab a lead, then set up their frontline relievers. The Giants havent led in this series; theyve trailed at the conclusion of 15 of 18 innings.
GIANTS
Angel Pagan CF
Marco Scutaro 2B
Pablo Sandoval 3B
Buster Posey C
Pence RF
Belt 1B
Blanco LF
Crawford SS
Vogelsong RHP (14-9, 3.37)

BREAKING: Giants sign Pablo Sandoval to minor league deal

BREAKING: Giants sign Pablo Sandoval to minor league deal

SAN FRANCISCO — Three years after departing for what he thought would be a better fit, Pablo Sandoval has returned. 

The third baseman, a key cog in the dynasty the Giants built earlier this decade, re-signed with the organization on a minor league deal on Saturday morning. Sandoval will join Class-A San Jose immediately and move on to Triple-A Sacramento on Tuesday. He was in the AT&T Park clubhouse on Saturday to take a physical. 

Sandoval, now 30 years old, spent the first seven years of his career in San Francisco, batting .294 with 106 homers amid battles with his weight and inconsistency. The Giants never quite got on the same page with Sandoval when it came to his conditioning, and he alternated between being a valued power hitter in the middle of their lineup and sitting on the verge of being replaced. 

In Boston, there were no such highs. Sandoval played just 161 games over three seasons, batting .237 with 14 homers, and playing poor defense. He posted a negative Wins Above Replacement in all three seasons with the Red Sox and he was designated for assignment last week. Sandoval twice cleared waivers, so the Red Sox are on the hook for the remainder of a five-year, $95 million contract. 

The Giants have not yet commented publicly about Sandoval, citing tampering rules. The view from team employees seems to be that there’s little risk in signing a former fan favorite who comes essentially for free. With Christian Arroyo on the disabled list, Sandoval will not be blocking one of the organization’s top prospects, although you can argue that a last-place team would be better served looking at players like Ryder Jones.

Most players were guarded in their comments this week. Hunter Pence, the lone player mentioned in a positive light by Sandoval in a scathing article after his departure, said he is excited for a reunion. Others offered some version of, “If he helps us win, so be it.” 

It’s unclear if Sandoval can still do that, and multiple team officials, speaking on background this week, said it’s a coin flip whether Sandoval ever returns to the majors. Still, the Giants are willing to flip that coin, and their history says they don't sign veterans and leave them in the minors. 

Giants make roster moves; right-handed bullpen arm, infielder recalled

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USATSI

Giants make roster moves; right-handed bullpen arm, infielder recalled

The Giants announced a quartet of roster moves ahead of Game 3 of their series against the San Diego Padres. 

Albert Suarez and Orlando Calixte have been recalled from triple-A Sacramento while Steven Okert and Jae-Gyun Hwang have been optioned down to triple-A. 

Suarez has missed the entire season with shoulder and calf injuries. 

Calixte has appeared in eight games with the Giants this season. In 29 plate appearences, he has four hits and three runs batted in. 

Hwang hit .167 in his time with the big league club.