SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants are still awaiting word on whether their All-Star contingent could grow beyond Madison Bumgarner and Hunter Pence.
NL manager Mike Matheny pledged to give Giants manager Bruce Bochy as much of a head’s up as possible concerning right-hander Tim Hudson, who is on the short list to replace one of the four NL All-Star pitchers scheduled to start in Sunday and thus eligible to be replaced on the active roster. Bumgarner is among those four pitchers.
By rule, an All-Star addition can’t be announced officially until the replaced pitcher actually throws a pitch on Sunday. Rainouts or other natural acts could alter rotations, in theory.
The real intrigue could be whether Buster Posey is asked to sacrifice his break to make a trip to Minneapolis. Cardinals catcher and NL starter Yadier Molina reportedly has a torn thumb ligament and is expected to miss eight to 12 months after having surgery on Friday.
The NL already has Devin Mesoraco and Jonathan Lucroy on the club, so they might be able to get by without a third catcher. But if Matheny seeks to add another backstop, the pickings get pretty thin. Atlanta’s Evan Gattis is the only other catcher with the numbers to go, and he’s on the DL with a bad back.
Privately, the Giants would just assume that Posey rest up over the break. It’s always an honor to be invited to go, of course, but it’s a little different when you’re asked as a fourth-string catcher as opposed to being the top vote getter, as Posey was last year.
The Giants recalled and activated Ehire Adrianza because Bochy planned to give shortstop Brandon Crawford a day off against lefty Scott Kazmir. But Crawford had two hits including a nice bunt single Wednesday, and Bochy figured his skills might be a good one-day fit in the No. 2 spot instead of Brandon Belt. Crawford has hit lefties all season, obviously, while Belt is trying to find his groove in his first week back from a fractured left thumb.
Bochy did say he plans to give Crawford more days off in the second half as the club gets into the August dog days, including hotter weather on some East Coast trips. That’s why Adrianza is here. The switch hitter started at third base at Fresno but the plan is to give him more starts at shortstop after the break.
Finally, the Giants held a brief pregame ceremony with Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson and Tim Lincecum. The pitcher and club donated his game-used hat, a game-used ball and Mike Krukow’s scoresheet from Lincecum’s June 25 no-hitter against the Padres.