SAN FRANCISCO -- With a career ERA of 23.14, it's pretty much a lock that things can only get better for right-hander Matt Palmer when the Giants rookie makes his second Major League start on Thursday against the Florida Marlins.

"I wasn't recognizing anything," Palmer said when asked if he recognized himself while watching tape of his debut, a 2 1/3-inning stint that led to seven hits, four walks and six runs in a 11-5 loss at Atlanta on Thursday. "I was just trying to throw a strike. My balls were moving off the plate so much, I was like, 'OK, throw it down the middle.' That's what I had to throw, and unfortunately, it was getting hit."

Palmer said the Giants coaches had pointed out a couple of mechanical flaws with his debut performance. No. 1 on the list of fixes was straightening up his posture; Palmer had been dipping his left shoulder too low as he came to the plate, throwing off his equilibrium and putting his control out of whack.

"Where I'm supposed to keep my shoulders tall, I was getting down low," Palmer said. "I was falling off the mound, which is just another sign of how I was out of rhythm with myself. I'm kind of glad they spotted it for me."

With Jonathan Sanchez's MRI not showing anything more significant than a shoulder strain, it's not clear how long Palmer's presence will be required in San Francisco. Not that the 29-year-old -- a seven-year veteran of the Minor Leagues -- is fazed by such news.

"I'm so glad for the opportunity," Palmer said. "I don't care if it's one day, 10 days, five days, the rest of my life. I'm glad I'm here, I've done it, and I'm going to keep doing what I did in Double-A, Triple-A and everywhere else. I know I can do it."

Pitching matchup
SF: RHP Matt Palmer (0-1, 23.14 ERA)
Palmer hadn't pitched in six days prior to his struggles against the Braves, which might have partly accounted for his ineffectiveness. He walked four and threw only 35 strikes in 66 pitches.

FLA: RHP Josh Johnson (3-0, 3.38 ERA)
Johnson picked up the no-decision, and the Marlins dropped their first game in seven Johnson starts this year. The 6-foot-7 right-hander left after throwing 112 pitches through six innings with a two-run lead, but the Cubs hit a three-run homer in the ninth to get the win. Johnson allowed three runs on five hits while walking three and striking out eight -- which ties his career high.

Tidbits
Asked about the recent spate of players around the league facing disciplinary action for not hustling, Giants manager Bruce Bochy recalled the tactics of Dick Williams, Bochy's former manager in San Diego from 1983-1985. "We were in Spring Training one year, and Dick Williams [and the Padres coaches], they had a watch on you, and if you didn't get down to first base in under five seconds, you came out of the game," said Bochy, who joked about his speed as a catcher. "I was kind of like Bengie [Molina]. I couldn't run, so they couldn't tell if I was hustling or not." . . . So, Bochy was asked, could you get to first in five seconds? "Yeah," Bochy said. "It was bang-bang. It was [measured] in hundredths of a second, but I could do it." ... Bochy said the team brass will hold discussions this week to decide who will be on the Giants' September call-up list. Bochy admitted it will be a smaller group than usual, given that 15 rookies have already made their debut this season. ... Pablo Sandoval, who made his second start of the season at first base, has been taking grounders across the diamond at third, and it's still possible the Giants may try him there, according to Bochy. ... Giants outfielder Nate Schierholtz was 1-for-5 with an RBI in the U.S. Olympic team's, 4-2, 11-inning win against Japan on Wednesday. The Americans will face Cuba on Friday in the semifinals.

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Up next
• Friday: Giants (Tim Lincecum, 13-3, 2.60) vs. Padres (Cha Seung Baek, 4-8, 4.99), 7:15 p.m. PT
• Saturday: Giants (Barry Zito, 7-15, 5.43) vs. Padres (TBD), 1:05 p.m. PT
• Sunday: Giants (Kevin Correia, 2-7, 5.15) vs. Padres (Josh Banks, 3-6, 4.81), 1:05 p.m. PT