Notes: Sore legs force Bonds to rest
Slugger taken out of lineup due to shin splints and knee pain
PHOENIX -- Soreness in both legs, which included shin splints and knee discomfort, kept Giants left fielder Barry Bonds out of Tuesday night's lineup against the Arizona Diamondbacks.Manager Bruce Bochy initially cited the shin splints in explaining Bonds' rest. Later, pressed about Bonds' troublesome knees, Bochy said, "They're a little sore. His whole legs, in general." Bochy didn't seem overly worried about Bonds' health, although the cleanup hitter's playing status for Wednesday will remain uncertain until he reports to Chase Field that afternoon. Asked whether placing Bonds on the 15-day disabled list had been considered, Bochy said, "I hope not. That's why he's not playing today. We'll keep that from happening if we can." Bonds' performance has suggested that he's not quite right. He hit .125 (5-for-40) with a double and zero RBIs during a 14-game homerless stretch May 9-26. He enjoyed a one-day renaissance on May 27 against Colorado, homering in a two-hit afternoon. But in seven games since then, including five starts, Bonds has hit .235 (4-for-17) with two doubles and one RBI. Bonds, who arrived early at Chase Field to undergo treatment and wasn't available for comment, appeared in 51 of San Francisco's first 56 games, tying him for second on the team. "We're talking about a 42-year-old man who's played a lot of baseball," said Bochy, who hoped to have Bonds available to pinch-hit. "We knew there'd be days like this during the season. The fact of the matter is, he's up there in age and he needs a break." Bochy indicated that Bonds' leg discomfort has been developing. "They haven't been feeling great," Bochy said.
That became obvious in Monday's fifth inning, when Bonds struggled to reach third base on Ray Durham's double to deep right-center field.Bochy acknowledged that this demonstrated Bonds' trouble with his legs. "They were bothering him then," Bochy said. With Bonds out, Kevin Frandsen started his first game in left field. The utility man began spending time there during Spring Training and appeared in two games in left as a late-inning replacement last month. It was a handy way to keep Frandsen's bat in the lineup; he went 5-for-8 in two starts in San Francisco's previous series at Philadelphia. Ortiz update: Right-hander Russ Ortiz, who left Monday's game after straining his throwing forearm, felt considerably better on Tuesday, although he didn't try tossing a baseball. "It's definitely a big improvement from yesterday," said Ortiz, who may attempt to throw Wednesday. Ortiz felt confident that his current ailment is a "muscle tweak" that will quickly subside. By contrast, the elbow injury that put him on the disabled list last month was nerve-related. Ortiz reported that his elbow stiffened on the flight here from Philadelphia, but felt better Tuesday morning after he iced it before going to bed. Sakata's record: Lenn Sakata, manager of the Class A San Jose Giants, established a new California League record for career victories with his 527th victory last Thursday against Bakersfield. Sakata eclipsed the mark previously held by Greg Mahlber. Sakata already owned the most victories by a San Jose Giants manager, having led them to the postseason in all five of his seasons with them. Thirty-two of Sakata's players have proceeded to the Major Leagues, including current Giants Matt Cain, Tim Lincecum, Frandsen, Noah Lowry, Eliezer Alfonzo and Fred Lewis. Coming up: The Giants and Diamondbacks continue their series Wednesday at Chase Field. Matt Morris will oppose Brandon Webb, Arizona's reigning National League Cy Young Award winner.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.