Giants

Urban: Can Sandoval Shake Rust for DH Duty?

163502.jpg

Urban: Can Sandoval Shake Rust for DH Duty?

Oct. 29, 2010
GIANTS PAGE GIANTS VIDEOMychael UrbanCSNBayArea.com

ARLINGTON,Tx. -- So much is made of how many days off a guys working on duringbaseballs playoffs that it only seems right to inform you.When Pablo Sandoval steps into the batters box Saturday night in Game3 of the 2010 World Series, hell be on eight days of rest.Oh, pipe down. I know the days-of-rest thing is typically reserved for pitchers.But why? Is eight days off from facing big-league pitching not just assignificant for a guy about to make his World Series debut as it wouldbe for a pitcher with eight days off from facing big-league hitters inthe same situation?Of course it is. And while weve gone halfway there, lets finish thejourney: Jonathan Sanchez, making his World Series debut as the Giantsstarting pitcher in Game 2, will be working on six days of rest. Thats childs play compared to what the Pandas going to do.Oh, pipe down. Of course Im exaggerating my stance for effect. Sue me.But it is worth considering now that the announcement has been madethat Sandoval, 3-for-14 in five playoff games, will indeed be the DH.Who are we to question Bruce Bochy? Hes pulled all the right leversall fall, coming up triple-cherries every time. Dont just take my wordfor it. Senior Sweaters work day Friday included a veritable Valentine to the Man With the Massive Melon.And who cares if Pablos a little rusty? Hes been getting his cage and tee work in, right? Besides, the Rangers are throwing a right-hander, Colby Lewis, onSaturday. Sandoval is far more dangerous from the left side of theplate. Makes a ton of sense.But consider this: There was talk for a while that perhaps Aubrey Huffwould be the DH, with Travis Ishikawa taking over at first base.Sandoval batted .286 against righties this year. Ishikawa? Also .286 against righties. And Ishikawas presence on the field would have further strengthenedthe defense against a Rangers team now jacked at the notion of gettingback their beloved DH.After all, Ishikawa isnt rusty at all. Hes been in damn near every playoff game. Two days rest.That would have made some sense, too.

Hundley still not ready to discuss future; Cain to start during final weekend

Hundley still not ready to discuss future; Cain to start during final weekend

PHOENIX — A few weeks ago, Nick Hundley said he preferred not to talk about his future until the end of the season. We’re close enough, so after hitting the go-ahead homer Monday night, Hundley was again asked about his 2018 plans. He smiled.

“How many have we got left? Five?” he said. “Ask me Sunday.”

It’s not just the media and fans seeking an answer from the popular backup who has nine homers. The Giants hope to get some feel from Hundley as they finalize offseason plans, and manager Bruce Bochy said he would talk to the veteran this week. Bochy left no doubt about what he hopes will happen.

“I think he knows what we think of him,” he said. 

Hundley, a 34-year-old who came over in the offseason, has been one of the few overachievers this season. He has 32 extra-base hits in 274 at-bats, taking advantage of increased time with Brandon Belt done for the year and Buster Posey sliding over to first base. Hundley is one of the lineup’s more potent right-handed options, and he has earned praise from the starting staff. Johnny Cueto said Hundley helped him navigate a post-clinch Diamondbacks lineup that was essentially pulled straight out of Triple-A. 

Cueto did so with ease, striking out eight in six innings. He evened his record at 8-8, and he’ll have a chance to clinch a winning season on Sunday. Bochy said Cueto will start the final game of the season, and he confirmed that Matt Cain will start either Friday or Saturday. Asked for more details, the manager kept it just as mysterious as his catcher. 

“I’ll let you know tomorrow,” he said.

Mariners club four home runs, end A's seven-game winning streak

Mariners club four home runs, end A's seven-game winning streak

BOX SCORE

OAKLAND -- Mitch Haniger homered twice and Felix Hernandez won for the first time in more than two months as the Seattle Mariners defeated the Oakland Athletics 7-1 on Monday night.

A day after being eliminated from playoff contention, the slumping Mariners snapped Oakland's season-high seven-game winning streak and its eight-game run at home - the team's second-longest in 11 years.

The Mariners had lost eight of nine.

Hernandez (6-5) gave up one run in six innings of two-hit ball. King Felix hadn't won since July 15, a stretch that included a stint on the disabled list from Aug. 2 to Sept. 13 with right shoulder bursitis. He was 0-2 with a 5.40 ERA in his previous five starts.

Haniger hit his 15th and 16th home runs off starter Daniel Gossett (4-10). The 24-year-old Oakland rookie gave up seven runs on a career-high four homers allowed.

Mike Zunino hit a three-run shot, his 24th, that broke a scoreless tie in the second. Yonder Alonso added his 26th homer, connecting against his former team.

Marcus Semien hit a solo homer off Hernandez in the sixth.

Andrew Albers pitched three shutout innings for his first save.

MAXWELL IN THE LINEUP:
A's catcher Bruce Maxwell played his first game since becoming the first player in the majors to kneel during the national anthem Saturday, part of a national protest movement against discrimination and harsh treatment of blacks by police. He was greeted with a loud ovation along with some boos sprinkled in from the Oakland crowd of 9,329. Maxwell cleared the concussion protocol on Monday. He hadn't played since Sept. 20.

SHOW OF SUPPORT:
In an apparent show of support for Maxwell, most of the Oakland Unified School District band members took a knee as they performed the national anthem before the game.

2,500 CLUB:
The 31-year-old Hernandez became the fifth active pitcher to log more than 2,500 career innings.

TRAINER'S ROOM:
Mariners: INF Jean Segura (sprained right middle finger) will likely miss the remainder of the series, manager Scott Servais said. "He wants to get in there before the season's over. It's important to him, but he's not going to be available for a couple of days," Servais said.

Athletics: 1B Matt Olson was scheduled to have an MRI to determine the severity of a hamstring injury he sustained Sunday. The 23-year-old rookie will miss the rest of the series, manager Bob Melvin said. Olson has 25 home runs in 189 at-bats. "We're hoping we can get him back in Texas, but I'm not so sure about that," Melvin said. ... LHP Sean Manaea, who missed his last scheduled start on Saturday with upper back tightness, threw a bullpen and is on track to make his next start Thursday, Melvin said.

UP NEXT:
Mariners: LHP James Paxton (12-5, 3.03 ERA) is 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in two starts since coming off the DL on Sept. 14. He had been sidelined with a strained left pectoral muscle. Paxton is 3-0 with a 3.77 ERA in five career starts against Oakland.

Athletics: RHP Daniel Mengden (2-1, 3.30) is 2-0 with a 0.82 ERA in his last three starts. Mengden took the loss in his only career start against Seattle last season. He struck out six and gave up two runs on five hits and two walks in five innings.