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09/27/11 10:00 PM ET
Burrell gets a start in potential final game
By Chris Haft and Adam Berry / MLB.com
SAN FRANCISCO -- Maybe it's a farewell; maybe it's not. Either way, Giants left fielder Pat Burrell will start against the Colorado Rockies in Wednesday's season finale.
Still bothered by the strained right foot that limited him to 90 games entering Tuesday, Burrell has started just twice since being reinstated from the disabled list on Aug. 31. But the 12-year veteran, whose baseball future is uncertain, asked manager Bruce Bochy for one more chance to get on the field.
"I don't know what's going to happen after this year," Burrell said. "Obviously, if there was something at stake, like the playoffs, I wouldn't ask. Now that we're kind of out of it, I politicked my way into it. ... I just want to play. My foot's not really better, but it's one game. I appreciate the chance."
The Giants have missed Burrell probably more than most observers realize. He hit .266 with 18 home runs, 51 RBIs and a .872 OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage) in 96 games for San Francisco last year, compared with this season's .229, seven homers, 21 RBIs and a .761 OPS -- a still-creditable figure, given his injury and sporadic activity. The Giants owned a .670 team OPS entering Tuesday.
Bochy acknowledged that Burrell has left a void in the offense.
"It changed us when we brought Buster [Posey] and Pat up, with their presence and discipline," Bochy said. "It made us a better offensive team."
Bochy also cited Burrell's knack for drawing walks and working deep counts.
"That type of stuff gets contagious," Bochy said.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Tuesday afternoon that outfielder Nate Schierholtz (fractured right foot) won't play in either of the club's final two games.
Schierholtz enjoyed his best season in the Majors, potentially earning an everyday outfield job in the future. Primarily playing right field but moving over to left after the Giants traded for Carlos Beltran, Schierholtz hit .278 with a .756 OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage), nine home runs and seven stolen bases. Amid a breakout season at the plate, Schierholtz's defense remained as solid as ever.
Outfielder Cody Ross was presented with the 2011 Bill Rigney Good Guy Award, voted on by the local Baseball Writers' Association of America, for his cooperation with the media. Ross gratefully accepted the trophy and placed it in his locker.
"It'll go right next to my [2010 National League Championship Series] MVP trophy," he said, smiling.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Ryan Vogelsong is the second pitcher in the last 50 years to have 13 more wins in a season at age 30 or older after not appearing in a Major League game the previous four years. The 34-year-old right-hander finished 13-7 with a 2.71 ERA -- 0.03 lower than Tim Lincecum -- following Monday's 3-1 win over the Rockies.