The Giants are crumbling before our eyes.
Already short handed on their bench tonight against the Braves, the Giants were forced to go to their bullpen early after left-hander Jonathan Sanchez was pulled in the bottom of the third inning with a left ankle sprain.
Sanchez suffered the injury while fielding a sacrifice bunt by opposing pitcher Randall Delgado. The southpaw gave up one run on one hit and one walk before being replaced by Guillermo Mota.
Barry Zito just sprained his ankle during a rehab start with Triple-A Fresno over the weekend, so the Giants will have to be creative if the injury to Sanchez requires an extended absence. Dan Runzler was just called up from the minor leagues today and has been used primarily as a starter with Triple-A Fresno this season. The more exciting option would be left-hander Eric Surkamp, who has a 2.03 ERA and 156/40 K/BB ratio over 128 1/3 innings at the Double-A level this season.
Cubs infielder/outfielder Ben Zobrist has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with back soreness. The move is retroactive to April 14. While it doesn’t appear to be the precursor to any serious injury, Zobrist has already missed six straight days of activity after feeling his back tighten up last weekend. Should he see the minimum time on the DL, as expected, he’ll be eligible to return by the start of the Cubs’ series against the Indians on Tuesday.
Prior to his injury, the 36-year-old outfielder raked an impressive .326/.408/.465 with three extra-base hits in 49 plate appearances. He last appeared for the Cubs during their homestand last weekend and helped propel the team to a 14-10 win over the Braves with three hits, two walks and two RBI. Provided that he can remain healthy going forward, it’s a promising start for the veteran outfielder, who has yet to return to the All-Star-worthy numbers he posted with the club in 2016.
With Zobrist sidelined for the time being, Ian Happ and Albert Almora Jr. have shared the leadoff spot and center field duties over the last week. Happ went 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in two games before passing the baton to Almora, who collected five hits and two RBI in 11 at-bats.