Downs settling in with Giants
Rookie second baseman could stay for a while
SAN FRANCISCO -- Four games into his Major League career, Matt Downs is just trying to slow things down.
"It's just flown by," said Downs, who was called up by the Giants on Tuesday and started every game since at second base. "I need to start getting a little more comfortable at the plate. The ball is a little faster, the crowd, the atmosphere.
"The game is fast the first couple of days."
Downs said his Spring Training experience this year has eased his adjustment from Triple-A Fresno to San Francisco.
"Nothing has shocked me," he said.
He has three hits in his first 13 Major League at-bats, two of which he collected Wednesday against former Fresno teammate Matt Palmer of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Downs' defense has disguised his outs at the plate. He backhanded a would-be ground-ball single in the 10th inning of Saturday's extra-inning win over the Texas Rangers.
"You're always told in baseball if you're not doing it at the plate, make sure you do it with your glove," he said.
With Emmanuel Burriss learning to lead off in the Minor Leagues and the hot-hitting Kevin Frandsen eligible to be called up Monday, manager Bruce Bochy said no changes are in store for the Giants' middle infield. Bochy added that he was impressed with Downs' quality of at-bats.
"He's handled himself very well," the manager said. "He's our second baseman right now."
While Juan Uribe will also see time at second base once his hamstring has fully healed, Bochy keeps writing Downs' name in the lineup. On Sunday, in the Giants' series finale against the Rangers, he was slated to bat seventh.
"To get thrown in the fire like that is awesome," Downs said.
Andrew Pentis is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.