The Padres have activated closer Huston Street for tonight’s game against the Giants, exactly one month after he was placed on the disabled list with a strained right lat muscle.
Street gave up two runs in two innings over two rehab appearances with High-A Lake Elsinore, but it was enough to convince the Padres that he was ready to return.
Street, who was acquired from the Rockies during the offseason, posted a 0.93 ERA, four saves and 13/2 K/BB ratio in 10 innings prior to going on the disabled list. The 28-year-old right-hander figures to be prime trade bait this summer for the rebuilding Padres. He’s making a very reasonable $7.5 million salary this season while his contract includes a $9 million mutual option for 2013 and a $500,000 buyout if the club declines.
The Giants placed outfielder Hunter Pence on the 10-day disabled list with a right thumb sprain, per an official announcement on Friday. Pence initially sustained the injury during the club’s home opener on April 3, when he dove to intercept a line drive double from Robinson Cano and jammed his thumb. Weeks of playing through the pain hasn’t worked, so he’ll take a breather while the Giants give outfielder Mac Williamson a chance to start in left after getting called up from Triple-A Fresno.
Pence, 35, wouldn’t pin his recent struggles on his injury, but it’s clear that he’s having difficulty finding his footing this year. He slashed a meager .172/.197/.190 through 61 plate appearances in 2018, collecting just one extra-base hit and two walks during the Giants’ dismal 7-11 stretch. While it’s far too early in the season to make any final judgments, it doesn’t look like the veteran outfielder will be replicating the .275+ average, 4.0+ fWAR totals of years past (at least, not anytime soon).
Williamson, meanwhile, has gotten off to a hot start in Triple-A. Prior to his call-up this weekend, the 27-year-old batted an incredible .487/.600/1.026 with six home runs and a 1.626 OPS through his first 50 PA. A hot Triple-A bat doesn’t always survive the transition to the majors, but the Giants will use all the help they can get — especially as they take on the AL West-leading Angels this weekend.