SAN FRANCISCO Power-hitting outfielder Roger Kieschnick finally reported to AT&T Park on Thursday, but not in the manner of his choosing.Kieschnick, who overcame multiple injuries to become a home run-hitting threat at Triple-A Fresno, is back on the disabled list after crashing his left shoulder into the fence while chasing a home run Tuesday at Sacramento. Kieschnick underwent an X-ray and MRI exam and is awaiting results.I just have to hope its not that bad, he said.Kieschnick, 25, was the Giants third-round pick in 2008 the draft that also produced Buster Posey, Conor Gillaspie and Brandon Crawford. Kieschnick, who played at Texas Tech, is the only member that quartet who hasnt reached the big leagues.An athletic right fielder with plenty of power, Kieschnick has missed time each of the past three seasons because of recurring lower back issues. But he was placed on the 40-man roster over the winter to protect him from the Rule 5 draft and was off to a tremendous start at Fresno, where he was hitting .319.390.623 with 12 doubles, four triples and 14 home runs in 51 games.Even though Kieschnick and Justin Christian were crushing the ball at Fresno, both are outfielders and that made a call-up unlikely in the near future. The club already is having trouble finding starts for Nate Schierholtz, now that Gregor Blanco has established himself as the leadoff hitter and Angel Pagan and Melky Cabrera continue to be among the most productive players in the National League.Fresno activated Gillaspie (groin) from its disabled list to take Kieschnicks spot on the roster.
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Bruce Bochy planned to give most of his pitchers one-inning stints during the first weekend of spring ball, but Matt Cain stretched it out to 40 pitches on Saturday.
“I’ve had enough days off the past couple of years,” Cain said, smiling.
In his first start of a crucial spring, Cain threw two innings. He was charged with three hits and two runs, just one of them earned.
“He’s in a good place right now with his arm strength,” Bochy said. “His delivery is consistent. I’m glad he got a lot of work today, to be honest. It’s something he needs as much as anybody on this staff, is work. He’s going to get it.”
Ty Blach, Cain’s biggest competition for the fifth starter spot, gave up four hits and one earned in his two innings. Neither pitcher was hit particularly hard, and both suffered a bit from iffy defense in the early innings of an 8-6 win over the Cubs.
The inning separating Cain and Blach was notable for other reasons. Mark Melancon made his Giants debut, getting two groundouts and a fly to right in a quick inning. Melancon received a nice ovation, and he noted the opponent — a Cubs team that helped guarantee the Giants would spend big on a closer — but he didn’t put any added importance on the outing.
“It doesn’t matter what I do out there right now,” he said.
Melancon’s new teammates might disagree. Spring or not, the Giants certainly enjoyed watching a closer breeze through his inning. Especially against the Cubs.
“He’s a pro,” Bochy said. “He’s going to be out there working on stuff, his command and pitches. It was good for Buster (Posey) to catch him. It was a good day for him.”
NOTABLE: On his first swing of the spring, Posey threw his bat up against the visiting dugout. It can only go uphill from there … Bryan Morris had a scoreless debut, striking out one … Josh Osich ran into some trouble in the eighth and gave up a pair of runs, but Bochy appreciated the way he fought his way out of the frame … Former Giants prospect Chris Dominguez started for the Cubs at first base. He had a couple of hits ... If you're headed to Goodyear for tomorrow's game, Joe Panik, Brandon Belt, Conor Gillaspie, Jimmy Rollins, Mac Williamson, Jarrett Parker, Gorkys Hernandez and Trevor Brown will start behind Matt Moore. Also, if you're headed to Goodyear, I'm sorry.
TRAINER’S ROOM: Eduardo Nuñez is limited to DH duty for now because of a sore throwing shoulder. Nuñez said the tightness popped up after some work in the weight room, but he’s not concerned at all. He said he would have played third base if Saturday’s game was a regular season contest. The Giants expect him in the field sometime next week.
Nuñez also said it took five weeks after the season ended for his hamstring to get back to 100 percent, so apparently that injury was much worse than it first looked. Nuñez was out on the field before every NLDS game, trying to get clearance to return. He never quite got there.
Will Smith (elbow) is just a day or two from throwing off flat ground, Bochy said.
CUETO UPDATE: The Giants had hoped to have Johnny Cueto in camp this weekend, but he remains in Boca Chica, Dominican Republic. Cueto is waiting for a visa for his ill father, Domingo, who will travel to Scottsdale with Johnny.
LIGHTER SIDE: Brandon Crawford spent a couple of minutes learning some of Jeff Samardzija’s mound moves. The impersonation is pretty solid.
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Jae-gyun Hwang spent his final season in Korea focusing on not flipping his bat. The excitement of his first home run in a Giants uniform nearly scuttled that plan.
“If I would have known it was going to go over the wall, I maybe would have thought about (flipping the bat),” Hwang joked.
Hwang instead busted it nearly all the way to third on a ball that cleared the wall a few feet from the right-field poll. He said he was aiming for a triple off the bat, but the ball had enough backspin to hit the berm. The opposite-field homer came on a two-strike count.
“I’m sure it's a relief for him to get his first hit, and of course, a homer,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “The ball carries here and he’s strong. Once it got up in the air there I thought it would go out. He did a good job of going the other way. You get a couple of strikes, you want to think the other way there.”
Bochy has liked what he’s seen from right-handed hitters the first two games, both victories. The Giants are intent on adding some thunder to their bench and on back-to-back days they have gotten late homers from non-roster invitees. A day after Chris Marrero’s three-run walk-off, Hwang hit a three-run shot. Justin Ruggiano, another right-handed bat, scorched a double in Saturday’s 8-6 win over the Cubs.
“We’ve got some good candidates and good players,” Bochy said. “They have pop. We’ll keep throwing them out there. You hope they make it hard on you, and I’m sure they will.”
Hwang had a rough debut, striking out twice in Friday’s Cactus League opener. He said he was over-swinging.
“Typically I don’t really get nervous before games, but I got a little nervous and jittery yesterday,” he said through interpreter Mark Kim. “I had unnecessary power in my swings.”
Hwang said coaches approached him after Friday’s game and told him to relax. The easy power that so intrigued the Giants showed up on Saturday.