SAN FRANCISCO – Brandon Crawford and Marco Scutaro might cut back on the high fives for a while, but the postgame prognosis was optimistic for both of the Giants’ two middle infielders Tuesday night.
Crawford left the game after three innings with a sprained index and middle finger on his right hand, but X-rays did not reveal a fracture and he might miss one game, if that. Scutaro, who was playing for the first time in a week after damaging a tendon in his left pinky, managed a pair of infield hits and said he’s feeling better about trying to play through the injury.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy was prepared to play without either of his starting middle infielders Wednesday afternoon, but Scutaro said he was optimistic his finger wouldn’t be too sore to keep him out of the lineup.
He is gripping the bat differently, holding his pinky in the air instead of resting it against the knob of the bat as he usually does. That’s why his pinky bent back the way it did when he was struck by a pitch last Tuesday in Pittsburgh.
Can he continue to hit with the adjustment?
“I have to,” he said. “I’ve just got to hang with it and just keep going until the swelling and the pain goes away.”
Crawford tried to stay in the game after jamming his hand on a headfirst slide into second base on a failed stolen-base attempt, but he had trouble gripping the ball. He descended down the dugout stairs and lightly tapped his helmet against the wall.
Ryan Vogelsong was very pleased after meeting with the hand specialist on Tuesday. His broken pinky is healing properly and so all five stabilizing pins were removed. He’ll stay in a splint for another week, “and then I can get going.”
Angel Pagan felt fine running bases and a date will be set Wednesday for him to start his minor league rehab assignment, Bochy said.
I joked with Brandon Belt that one of the Bs in BABIP should stand for Bricks. As in, the ones near the top of the arcade that he hit with his tying double in the eighth inning. Belt likes to joke with reporters that he’s looking for ways to boost his BABIP (batting average on balls in play).
Yes, Jesus Guzman got a full measure of satisfaction after hitting his two-run home run off Jeremy Affeldt that erased a victory for Matt Cain and momentarily gave the Padres a 4-3 lead. Guzman walked out of the box and carried his bat a bit further up the line, then turned toward his dugout and yelled while hopping a few times.
Bochy, asked about it, offered his standard “I don’t get caught up in that” response. But it sure looked like Buster Posey offered a comment to Guzman before the NL MVP came out for a pinch runner in the eighth.
Sergio Romo, on stopping the Padres’ winning streak: “It’s just big for us in general to reward our fans for sticking by us. They’ve been playing well. Maybe we can build off this and get going ourselves. We’ve got to be equally competitive to top them, the way they’re playing. So it’s a huge win in general.”
Jeremy Affeldt has pitched well all season, but in the past two weeks, he’s allowed two home runs to right-handed batters that have cost the Giants the lead – as well as two wins for Cain.
This is not the time for Affeldt to have trouble against right-handed hitters. The Giants need him to be solid against them until Santiago Casilla returns in a few weeks.
“We’re playing tight games and we need to get a little better there,” Bochy said.
Add two more animals to the menagerie that already includes the Baby Giraffe and the Kung Fu Panda.
Jean Machi’s nickname is “baquiro,” which is the word in Venezuela for a wild pig. And Jose Mijares is “bufalo,” which translates to exactly what you’d imagine.