I’ve been trying to come up with an explanation for this and I’ve come to the conclusion that Giants manager Bruce Bochy really thinks tonight’s game against the Pirates is going to be canceled and he is simply messing with our heads.
Here it is, courtesy of Andrew Baggarly on the San Jose Mercury News:
Yes, that’s right. Pablo Sandoval — a mainstay in the middle of the lineup for the past two seasons — will bat eighth against left-hander Paul Maholm on Saturday. While that’s all kinds of crazy on its own, Aubrey Huff will make his first start in right field since the 2006 season and Pat Burrell will make his Giants debut in left field. Yikes. Don’t forget your Maalox, Giants fans.
We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.
McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.
Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.