PHOENIX -- Much of this season's first half was spent celebrating the All-Star double-play duo of Brandon Crawford and Joe Panik. With their division hopes all but over, the Giants are left wondering if the two will play together even one more time this season.
Crawford had MRIs on his left calf and left oblique on Wednesday and will miss at least a couple more days. When he returns, there's no guarantee Panik will be at second base. He was pulled late in a 2-1 loss to the Diamondbacks because his back flared up again.
"It just didn't feel right," Panik said. "I don't know how far back (in the rehab process) we're going to go. I definitely didn't feel well. Something was aggravated. It just kind of came back a little."
Panik is hopeful that his second big league season isn't over.
"I'm a competitor," he said. "It all depends on how I'm feeling. If I'm able to, I want to get out there, but at the same time you have to be smart."
There seems to be no reason to push Panik at this point. The Giants were flat again Wednesday, whiffing on one late scoring opportunity after another. They remain 8 1/2 games behind the Dodgers, who lost in Anaheim.
[INSTANT REPLAY: Giants waste chances late vs. D'backs]
"The one run we got was on a wild pitch," manager Bruce Bochy said. "That's not going to work."
After Chris Heston gave up a two-run homer, Bochy managed this one with urgency. Heston was pulled in the fifth so Jeremy Affeldt could come in and play the matchup. Bochy said he told Heston he would have gone further in a non-September game. In this one, he got quite a bit of work from a deep bullpen.
"He was throwing the ball well," Bochy said of Heston.
Heston was sharp early, striking out four in the second and third innings.
"The stuff was coming out good," he said. "I'm just trying to build off all the positives I can and finish strong."
The rotation has been better in recent days, but the lineup continues to flounder without so many key bats. The Giants went 0 for 10 with runners in scoring position. Crawford excelled in those spots when healthy, but his season is coming to a disappointing finish. He said the calf pain made him swing with his upper body only, and that aggravated the oblique strain.
“It’s a matter of getting both healthy,” Crawford said. “If I didn’t get hit in the calf, the oblique would be better by now.”
Bochy said before the game that it isn't time to shut players down, but at some point the staff will look toward next year. Crawford is confident he’ll be back for the final 2015 stretch, but Panik’s injury, which cost him 34 games already, is more complicated. He didn’t look quite right even while playing well and hitting a homer on Tuesday, and he said the discomfort increased as Wednesday’s loss went on. One diving play and pain after a late-game at-bat convinced the staff that it was time to end Panik’s night.
“It’s just non-stop right now,” Bochy said of the flood of injuries. “It’s just really unbelievable.”