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Notes: Santiago still hurting
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07/06/2003 10:42 PM ET 
Notes: Santiago still hurting
Giants call up Castillo as catching insurance
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SAN DIEGO -- The Giants are guessing that Benito Santiago's dislocated left pinky is not serious enough to put him on the disabled list, at least not yet.

  Benito Santiago   /   C
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 195
Bats/Throws: R/R

More info:
Player page
Stats
Splits
Hit chart
kcroyals.com

Instead, with Santiago inactive, the Giants opted to purchase the contract of catcher Alberto Castillo from Triple-A Fresno and sent outfielder Tony Torcato back to the Pacific Coast League after only two days with the team.

Torcato was brought up Friday, the day Santiago hurt himself sliding head-first into third base and jamming his hand into the bag.

"You kind of hate to send Torcato down so quickly. You feel for the kid," manager Felipe Alou said before Sunday's 3-2 Giants win over the Padres at Qualcomm Stadium. "But he'll be back as soon as Benny is ready."

Alou said he hopes Santiago might be ready before the All-Star break, which is only seven days away. Santiago still has a chance to be voted to the National League as the team's 32nd man. Fans can vote here at sfgiants.com or MLB.com. The etopps All-Star Final Vote ends on Wednesday, July 9, at 3 p.m. PT. Winners will be announced on MLB.com shortly thereafter.

Alou said Santiago isn't nearly ready. "He came into [my office] today and the hand looked bruised and swollen," Alou said. "It didn't look like the same finger."

Santiago, at 38, is having another stellar season. He's batting .294 with 10 homers and 41 RBIs in 67 games.

The move leaves the Giants with their starting outfield of Barry Bonds, Marquis Grissom and Jose Cruz Jr. and Pedro Feliz as a sometime backup. Feliz is a third baseman and right-handed pinch-hitter.

The situation dictates that Bonds may have to play all seven games before the All-Star break, although Tuesday's early day game after a night game against the Cardinals at Pacific Bell Park may be a possible day off. Alou said he'd still like to spot the 38-year-old Bonds to keep him fresh during the course of the long season.

Bonds has played in 74 of the Giants' 86 games.

"I'm going to keep playing as long as they need me," Bonds said. "I'm looking around here and I don't see too many other outfielders right now. Pedro will get some time. He's a good athlete."

Bonds then asked the starting time of Tuesday's game. When told it is a 12:35 p.m. PT start, he said, "I might not play in that game."

  Marquis Grissom   /   OF
Height: 5'11"
Weight: 190
Bats/Throws: R/R

More info:
Player page
Stats
Splits
Hit chart
sfgiants.com

Speaking of Grissom: One of the significant factors during the first half of the season in the NL West can be attributed to the fact that the Dodgers allowed center fielder Grissom to leave as a free agent after last season to sign with the Giants.

Grissom replaced Kenny Lofton, who started for the Giants during the playoffs and World Series. Grissom is hitting .302 with 11 homers and 40 RBIs.

Meanwhile in Los Angeles, outfielders Brian Jordan (knee) and Dave Roberts (hamstring) are on the disabled list. The Dodgers have been playing Mike Kinkade in left and rookie Wilkin Raun in center. Raun was just brought up last week.

"You knew that would happen when I left," Grissom said. "They've got some 30-year-old players who get hurt a lot. I told Jordan to forget about being a hero this season and have that surgery on his knee. I know they need me there, but they need me here, too."

Grissom hit .277 with 11 homers and 70 RBIs last season in 111 games for the Dodgers.

Coming up: The Giants go home for just two games and open a two-game series against the Cardinals at Pacific Bell Park on Monday night. Right-hander Garrett Stephenson (4-8, 4.29 ERA) is scheduled to pitch for St. Louis against Giants right-hander Jerome Williams (7-3, 4.44 ERA). They are in the middle of a stretch when they play 12 out of 14 games on the road.

Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.





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