The Giants pushed their lead over the Cardinals to 2-0 in the bottom of the second inning thanks to a two-out RBI single by Matt Cain. Yes, you read that correctly.
Brandon Belt grounded out to begin the inning before Gregor Blanco reached on a single to right field. Blanco moved over to second base when Allen Craig made a diving stop of a ground ball off the bat of Brandon Crawford for the second out. However, Kyle Lohse hung one and Cain took advantage by lining it right up the middle and into center field. The Giants have RBI hits from their starting pitchers in three straight games.
Cain has tossed two scoreless innings so far tonight, but he has already thrown 46 pitches. While he might not be long for this game, he’s sure making an impact.
Pablo Sandoval could be tabbed to play second base in the near future, per a report from John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle. According to Shea, Sandoval has been spotted taking grounders at second during pre-game warm-ups and may be considering switching to the keystone on a part-time basis.
It wouldn’t be the weirdest thing the 31-year-old corner infielder has done this year — that distinction goes to the flawless inning of relief he pitched in a blowout loss against the Dodgers last month. But it would represent a pretty notable departure from his comfort zone even so; Sandoval has primarily manned first and third base throughout his 11-year career in the majors and has also taken a few reps at DH during his resurgence with the Giants in 2018.
Of course, this wouldn’t necessarily be a permanent switch for Sandoval. As Shea points out, the Giants are thin on middle infielders after losing Joe Panik to a torn UCL in his left thumb and backup Alen Hanson to a left hamstring strain. Provided he can get up to speed quickly (no easy feat, according to infield coach Ron Wotus), he’d give the club some added depth behind Kelby Tomlinson and Miguel Gomez until Panik is ready to take the field again. Sandoval has impressed at the plate this spring, batting a healthy .270/.329/.429 with six extra-base hits and a .757 through 70 plate appearances.