OAKLAND -- As the Giants continue their search for consistency from their lineup, Brandon Belt has rebounded from early-season struggles with a 10-game hitting streak, including his game-tying two-run double in the ninth inning of Friday's 5-4 win against the A's.
"It's big right now because, to be honest, we're not really swinging the bats well throughout the lineup," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said before Saturday's game vs. the A's. "We were on fire there and had a lot of guys hot, but right now they're searching a little bit. When that happens, hopefully somebody helps pick you up, and Brandon did last night and has been getting better at-bats. That's what we need right now."
Belt has been hitting .419 (13-for-31) in the 10-game stretch after hitting .224 in 46 games before that, and he compared his recent success to his 2010 Minor League season in which he hit a combined .352 in 136 games for San Jose (Class A), Rihmond (Double-A) and Fresno (Triple-A).
"It was pretty much the same approach; I had the same feeling as I have now," Belt said. "The best way I can explain is that I found my swing. Earlier in the year, it was a struggle for me to find my swing for some reason. But you have to keep working through it, and I did, and I finally found my swing."
Belt has also hit all three of his home runs this season in the past 10 games, as well as having three doubles and nine RBIs.
"I think even before the whole streak started, I knew I was beginning to find it because I was making contact pretty well," Belt said. "I was still hitting balls hard; they just didn't fall as hits. Once you start hitting balls like that, though, you know that they'll start falling in. You start driving the ball more, and pretty soon you'll be hitting these home runs, hitting more doubles."
Lincecum reports he's added pounds
OAKLAND -- Tim Lincecum's able to put a little more on his pitches besides his hand.Lincecum told reporters from The Associated Press and the San Francisco Chronicle on Saturday that he weighs 167 pounds, representing a 10-pound gain from his season-opening weight. That could account for Lincecum's improvement against Oakland on Friday night, when he recorded only his third quality start of the season. He lasted six innings and yielded three runs and three hits, all in the first inning, as the Giants defeated the A's, 5-4. The slightly built right-hander has a penchant for dramatic changes in weight. Shortly before Spring Training began, Lincecum said that he weighed 175 pounds after finishing the 2011 season at 187 and bulking up to 196 early in the offseason.
Posey chats with kindred spirit Fosse
OAKLAND -- The catchers on the receiving end of two of the most controversial home-plate collisions finally got the chance to meet Saturday.
Ray Fosse and Buster Posey shook hands and shared small talk in the Giants' clubhouse a few hours before Saturday's game between the Giants and the A's.
Fosse, who was the catcher Pete Rose bowled over in the 1970 All-Star Game, is now a color commentator for the A's television broadcasts, and despite their close proximity, the two hadn't met until Saturday.
"I was just waiting for the opportunity," Fosse said. "This was the perfect [chance]. I'm glad I could do it."
The then-23-year-old Fosse separated his shoulder as a result of his collision with Rose in the All-Star Game, and he said after Posey's May 2011 collision with Florida Marlins outfielder Scott Cousins that the hit was avoidable.
"I know I was very vocal about what happened last year, and I still stand by what I say," Fosse said. "It was an unnecessary hit."
Posey sustained season-ending injuries as a result of the play, while Fosse was able to return for 42 games in the second half of the 1970 season. Despite the injuries, Fosse has said that he doesn't feel that there should be rule changes to protect catchers, though he cautioned that baserunners will need to use their judgment to avoid injury-causing collisions.
"I think the biggest thing for the catcher is that if he has the ball, he can hurt somebody," Fosse said. "I fear someday that somebody will try to slide headfirst, and if the catcher is set -- and the catchers legs are strong and usually a pretty good size -- and if somebody hits them and they're standing, it's like a brick wall. I just don't want to see anybody sliding headfirst, at any bases, but especially at home."