05/27/12 1:20 PM ET
Blanco emerging as potent leadoff hitter
By Anthony Chiang / Special to MLB.com
The 28-year-old entered Sunday's game with eight hits in 14 at-bats, to go along with four runs scored and an RBI in the series. Blanco is hitting .340 with a .453 on-base percentage in his past 13 games.
"I've been working with my hitting coach to just try to focus on keeping the ball on the ground and hitting low liners," Blanco said. "That has been my game. I have to do what I need to do to be a leadoff hitter and get on base."
This season, he has done just that. Blanco has shown the patience needed to be a solid leadoff hitter, as he leads San Francisco with 20 walks in only 121 plate appearances.
And in 90 at-bats as the Giants' leadoff hitter, Blanco has already scored 20 runs.
"I'm just trying to be consistent," he said. "I think if I hit the ball on the ground, my legs can do the rest. I know I can run, and all I need to do is put the ball on the ground."
BP likely for Panda soon; setback for Sanchez
MIAMI -- Switch-hitter Pablo Sandoval is expected to be ready to rejoin the Giants in two weeks, and he could begin taking batting practice even sooner than that.
Manager Bruce Bochy said Sunday that he's "pretty sure" Sandoval will start taking batting practice again early next week. Sandoval was placed on the 15-day disabled list on May 3, one day after he fractured the hamate bone in his left wrist.
"He's real close," Bochy said. "I don't have a date, but he's doing quite well."
The news wasn't as encouraging regarding Freddy Sanchez, who is now battling a sore lower back along with trying to complete his recovery from a dislocated right shoulder that required surgery last August.
Bochy revealed Sunday that Sanchez received another epidural injection in his back recently. Still, the Giants are hoping the second baseman can overcome the injuries.
"We're not giving up on him," Bochy said. "But it's an obvious setback."
Belt makes adjustment to hitting stance
MIAMI -- The results might not show it yet, but manager Bruce Bochy is pleased with the adjustments first baseman Brandon Belt has made at the plate.
The 24-year-old has listened to his coaches and is using a more open and upright stance.
"Brandon and I did talk a couple of days ago," Bochy said. "He was a little down. We talked about a lot of things, about a hitting approach. Sometimes you have to make adjustments, and that's where he's at."
Belt entered Sunday's game hitting just .231 this season, and he is 6-for-40 in his past 17 games. But Bochy is hoping Belt can turn it around with the help of his new stance.
"I like where he's at right now," the manager said. "[Belt] likes where he's at too, and that's probably more important. When you tweak your stance or your swing, it usually takes a few days to feel really comfortable."
Anthony Chiang is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.