Stiffness limits Giants pitchers Lincecum, Wilson


Stiffness limits Giants pitchers Lincecum, Wilson

Feb. 16, 2011

Mychael Urban

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Of all the Giants pitchers, Tim Lincecum and Brian Wilson are surely the last two that the team's fans want to see on the injury report.There they were on Wednesday, though, victimized by varying degrees of soreness that limited them in workouts.Lincecum, whose bullpen session Tuesday was the talk of camp, was held out of fielding drills and sprints because of a stiff neck. His name alone makes anything health-related seem like huge news, but Lincecum couldn't have possibly downplayed it more after receiving treatment in the trainers' room."It's not a big deal," Lincecum said shortly after noon while sitting at his locker in the Scottsdale Stadium clubhouse. "Nothing to freak out about."Lincecum theorized that he'd slept on the neck at an odd angle, suggesting that the pain was in no way baseball-related."I did my throwing and all my other work," he said, adding that he fully expect to throw in the bullpen again as scheduled on Thursday.Wilson was not available for comment after his day was shortened by what manager Bruce Bochy said was back stiffness.The Giants' colorful closer took the field with the rest of the team's pitchers and catchers for the 10 a.m. start of the workout and briefly played catch before abruptly shutting it down and disappearing into the covered batting cages behind the right-field wall, leaving his gear behind.He likely worked his way from the cages to the back field that has a side entrance near the trainer's room, and he was dressed and gone before long.Bochy downplayed both of his star pitchers' ailments, offering the standard platitudes about caution being the order of the day this early in spring, and it's worth noting that Wilson and Lincecum are two of the most fit players on the club, neither with much of an injury history.
It's also worth noting, however, that Wilson appeared to be holding back a bit in his bullpen session Tuesday. Bochy said Wilson might be able to throw in the bullpen as scheduled Thursday, too, but if there's any stiffness at all when Wilson reports to camp in the morning, the Giants aren't going to take any chances.
REWIND: Bochy holds off on announcing Giants rotationFollow Mychael on Twitter @MUrbanCSN.

Belt relates to Arroyo's benching in slump: 'It doesn’t need to be bad thing'

Belt relates to Arroyo's benching in slump: 'It doesn’t need to be bad thing'

SAN FRANCISCO — At this point Bruce Bochy has had plenty of experience working young infielders into his everyday lineup, so he knew exactly which move to turn to when Christian Arroyo dropped into a wicked slump.

With Arroyo hitless in his last 21 at-bats, Bochy sat him Saturday night against the Braves. His plans could always change, of course, but Bochy said he planned to sit Arroyo at least one more game. It’s a move he used most notably in 2013 to help Brandon Belt get back on track.

Belt was in a 1-for-19 rut when Bochy kept him out of the starting lineup for an entire series in Philadelphia. He had just one pinch-hit appearance, but he returned for the opener of the next series in Tampa Bay, notching three hits and a homer. Belt batted .346 the rest of the way.

Asked about that experience and Arroyo's current one, Belt at first made a different point.

“Arroyo has actually been really good for us,” he said. “That road trip we just had, we faced a lot of really good pitchers. There’s nothing for him to hang his head about.”

Belt has actually had several “clear your head” breaks over the years.

“It allows you to reset a little, and with the pressure, you can release that a little bit,” he said. “For me (in 2013) it forced me to make (mechanical) changes and when you have time off you see everything more clearly. You can make changes or go back to something that was working for you before. He shouldn’t look at this as a timeout. It doesn’t need to be a bad thing. You can make adjustments and it can be a good thing.”

Bochy originally planned to rest Arroyo on Thursday in Chicago, but Eduardo Nuñez’s hamstring needed a day. Arroyo started at second Friday against a lefty but got the full night off Saturday. With Conor Gillaspie sidelined for several more days by a tight back and Hunter Pence out the rest of the homestand, there's time for the Giants to contemplate what they want to do going forward.

“We’ll get this sorted out,” Bochy said. “We’ve (worked) him pretty hard. This is to give him a chance to catch his breath, get his mind right, and work on some things.”

A's lineup: Alonso returns, batting fifth vs Yankees

A's lineup: Alonso returns, batting fifth vs Yankees

The A's get a big back back in the lineup Sunday in New York as they look to win a series against the Yankees.

Oakland A's (22-26)

1. Mark Canha (R) CF
2. Stephen Vogt (L) DH
3. Jed Lowrie (S) 2B
4. Khris Davis (R) LF
5. Yonder Alonso (L) 1B
6. Ryon Healy (R) 3B
7. Josh Phegley (R) C
8. Matt Joyce (L) RF
9. Adam Rosales (R) SS
Andrew Triggs -- RHP

New York Yankees (28-18)

1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Gary Sanchez (R) C
3. Matt Holliday (R) DH
4. Starlin Castro (R) 2B
5. Aaron Judge (R) RF
6. Didi Gregorius (L) SS
7. Aaron Hicks (S) CF
8. Chris Carter (R) 1B
9. Ronald Torreyes (R) 3B
Michael Pineda -- RHP