PHOENIX – Ryan Vogelsong will see the hand surgeon when he returns home next week and it’s possible he’ll have the pins removed from his broken right pinkie finger.
He also should receive a more detailed timetable for when he might return to the Giants rotation.
The club transferred Vogelsong to the 60-day disabled list on Saturday to create a 40-man roster spot for infielder Tony Abreu, but that paper move won’t delay Vogelsong’s return. He’s now eligible to be activated July 20 – the second game back from the All-Star break.
“It would be pretty amazing if I could come back that fast,” he said.
He’s crossing his fingers – the ones on his left hand, anyway – that the pins are doing the job and his finger, which was pretty well crushed when he was hit by a pitch May 20, is healing properly. If so, then it’s possible be could return before Aug. 1. (The initial diagnosis of four to six weeks was a bit ambitious, it turns out.)
In the meantime, Vogelsong is learning to do things left-handed and shaving is not among them. He decided to make life a bit easier and just grow a beard.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy said he took out Madison Bumgarner in the sixth with a pitch count of 87 Saturday night because it was “really hot, really muggy” in the dugout and he thought the left-hander might have gotten gassed running the bases in the top of the inning.
[INSTANT REPLAY: Giants find scoring touch]
Bumgarner said that wasn’t the case. (Other than Chad Gaudin the other day, it’s hard to remember a pitcher admitting he was gassed.) He just said he started to miss spots after doing a credible job of throwing to all four quadrants of the strike zone over the first five innings.
Whenever the Giants can lighten the load on one of their starting pitchers, it’s never a bad idea. That’s a benefit in a blowout win, and Bochy took advantage of it.
Bumgarner was due for this one. He had gotten a total of two runs of support over his previous three starts. He entered with an average run support of 3.00, which ranked as the sixth lowest among NL pitchers.
I mentioned this in the Instant Replay, but Gregor Blanco’s outfield assist (on Cody Ross trying to go first to third on a single) was just the fifth by a Giants outfielder this season.
That’s the fewest in the majors.
If you’re arguing that Blanco should stay in center field when Angel Pagan returns, I’m not going to pick a fight with you.
Andres Torres said yes, Miguel Montero brushed him on the shoulder on that play at the plate in the second inning. But when umpire Greg Gibson called him safe, he sure as heck wasn’t going to stick around and bear witness.
Gerardo Parra, by the way … wow. Let’s just say the Giants would have more outfield assists if he were playing anywhere out there.
It’s a good night when the Brandons combine for seven hits.
Mssrs. Belt and Crawford kept the line moving in the lower half of the lineup. Andres Torres drew a key walk and came back from an 0-2 count to hit a sacrifice fly before the Giants broke the game open, too.
Crawford is back at .292 after his four-hit night. I don’t think he needs to hit .330 with the likes of Jean Segura and Troy Tulowitzki to make the NL All-Star team. Remember, Bruce Bochy gets to name the reserves. But the higher he can keep that average, the easier it will be for Bochy to justify finding a place for him on the squad.
I look forward to catching up with scouting director John Barr once things calm down to hear about all the players the club drafted. One name that stood out to me from Day 3 was Jonah Arenado, a high school third baseman from El Toro, Calif. – and the younger brother of Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado.
It’s hard to find a better draft story than the Diamondbacks and what they did with their 34th-round pick. Uplifting stuff, there.