SAN FRANCISCO -- While Bruce Bochy cleared up questions regarding the starting rotation before Wednesday's workout at AT&T Park, the Giants manager left a few unsaid answers regarding the rest of his roster for the National League Championship Series.One thing the skipper did say, however, was that the Giants likely will stick with an 11-man pitching staff. "Doubtful [to make a change], more likely we'll stay with 11, but we'll talk here more after the workouts more," Bochy said. "There's time before we set the roster. We took the day off yesterday pretty much, but today we'll start having more meetings." Following Wednesday's workout, righty Guillermo Mota and left-hander Jeremy Affeldt -- who were on the NL Division Series roster but didn't make an appearance -- and right-hander Chris Ray and lefty Dan Runzler -- who were left off the first postseason roster -- all threw to hitters. Bochy said he and his staff would discuss whether to add Runzler, who would be the team's third left-handed reliever, throughout the next few days. Regarding the lineup for the NLCS, Bochy said there could be "a change here or there, but not very many of them."
Giants keeping setup options open
SAN FRANCISCO -- Sergio Romo's first playoff series didn't go as well he would have liked, and it looks as though the 27-year-old right-hander now will at least temporarily lose his title as Giants setup man.After being charged with three runs in two National League Division Series appearances -- including allowing back-to-back singles in the Game 2 loss -- Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Wednesday at AT&T Park he would opt to go with matchups when the eighth inning comes around in the NL Championship Series against the Phillies. "It's a different team, different lineup, so we may tweak that a little bit," Bochy said when asked if Romo would be his eighth-inning reliever. Bochy said he would feel comfortable with Romo, Ramon Ramirez, Santiago Casilla or Javier Lopez in eighth-inning situations. The Giants clubhouse was open to the media prior to Wednesday's workout and before Bochy spoke to the team. When asked if he had heard anything about his setup role being in jeopardy, Romo chuckled and said he would be more than willing to take the ball whenever needed. "I pitch when I'm told to pitch. I don't worry about what inning, what situation; I want to pitch whenever he gives me the ball," Romo said. "I'm excited to pitch and do my best for what's best for the team. I'm not going to be hurt or bummed out if I don't pitch in a certain situation. I just want to pitch and contribute to whatever pitching situation." Romo also struggled in Game 3, giving up a tiebreaking home run before the Giants came back to win. As he prepares for his second postseason series, Romo said he's confident he'll bounce back. "You definitely learn from your mistakes and now I know what it's like to pitch in the playoffs," Romo said. "I've got two outings under my belt -- actually got two outs -- so there is a win that we were able to win that series."
Bochy contemplating Sandoval's role
SAN FRANCISCO -- In the final two games of the National League Division Series, Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval found himself on the bench.As the Giants prepare for the next leg of the postseason, there's a high possibility the Kung Fu Panda's role could continue to be diminished. Prior to the Giants' workout Wednesday at AT&T Park, manager Bruce Bochy wouldn't get into specifics regarding Sandoval's status for the NL Championship Series, which begins Saturday in Philadelphia (4:30 p.m. PT on FOX). "Even though he didn't play the last two games we know this guy's a good hitter," Bochy said. "We'll decide which way we're going to go once we get to Philly and decide on the lineup." The Giants previously tried to sit Sandoval near the end of the regular season -- starting Juan Uribe at third and Edgar Renteria at shortstop -- but an injury to Renteria forced Sandoval back into the lineup. Sandoval ended the regular season with a hit in each of his final five starts, but after going 1-for-6 with two strikeouts in the first two games against Atlanta, the Giants decided to start Mike Fontenot instead. Although he admitted he'd prefer to start, Sandoval said, "I'm going to try to do my best if I get the opportunity to be in there." Bochy said he hopes Sandoval's 2010 struggles eventually lead to success. "He's still very much a part of this, and hopefully this is a great experience for him, both the season and the postseason here -- the ups and downs that you have to deal with as a Major League player," Bochy said. "He'll be a stronger player because of this."
Rodeo clowning holds allure for Ross
SAN FRANCISCO -- The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association's loss was the Major Leagues' gain.Outfielder Cody Ross, the Giants' offensive savior in the National League Division Series against Atlanta, formerly harbored dreams of being a rodeo clown. For the uninitiated, a rodeo clown distracts a bull from a fallen rider. This naturally puts the clown at great risk. So there's nothing funny about the job. "I guess I thought that riding the bull is too dangerous," Ross said Wednesday. "I just liked the mentality [the clowns] had -- no fear. That's probably the reason I was drawn to them." Ross, a native of New Mexico, said that he'd still like to involve himself in the rodeo business, perhaps as a stock contractor. Giants manager Bruce Bochy easily pictured Ross as a rodeo clown.
"He's nimble; he's quick. I could see that," Bochy said.
Giants fans aren't the only ones getting into the "Fear the Beard" slogan for closer Brian Wilson that has engulfed Bay Area partisans. Numerous Giants players walked around the AT&T Park clubhouse Wednesday with bright orange shirts that read "Fear the Beard" and had a blank face with a large black beard. ... Another bright orange shirt at the ballpark Wednesday was the Buster Posey giveaway T-shirt Cody Ross was wearing during a TV interview after the workout. ... Following a bet between Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom for the NLDS, a Giants flag will soon be flying above Atlanta City Hall, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Newsom also told the Chronicle he and Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter would make a creative bet for the NLCS.