06/24/12 4:24 PM ET
Giants showing improvement on defense
By Jay Lee / MLB.com
Solidified defensive play in the infield has come in recent weeks after early season struggles for the Giants, who still lead the National League with 60 errors. San Francisco has committed just five errors in its last 14 games.
"Overall, we're playing better, we're catching the ball better," manager Bruce Bochy said. "We're playing more like the team that we are."
Bochy said the infield has benefited from consistency in the lineup, with first baseman Brandon Belt receiving regular playing time in recent weeks and third baseman Pablo Sandoval returning from a May 2 wrist injury that sidelined him until June 9.
"Belt has settled in with his everyday playing time, and now Pablo is getting more and more comfortable," Bochy said. "We're going with the set lineup."
Giants do homework before facing rookie
OAKLAND -- With A's Sunday scheduled starter Brandon McCarthy scratched after his Saturday bullpen session, the Giants faced A.J. Griffin in the right-hander's Major League debut in Sunday's series finale.
"We're facing a young kid who has good stuff," manager Bruce Bochy said. "He's been throwing the ball really well, so we expect to see a good pitcher out there."
McCarthy is sidelined with ongoing shoulder soreness, giving way to Griffin, who was called up from Triple-A Sacramento. Bochy said the team relied on scouting reports and game film to prepare for Griffin, who wasn't announced as the A's starter until a few hours before the game.
"You try and get all the information you can," Bochy said. "He's a tall kid with good stuff, four pitches. We pretty much know what he has; we've just never seen him."
Griffin held a 3-2 record and 2.81 ERA in Sacramento, including three starts against the Fresno Grizzlies, the Giants' Triple-A team. Justin Christian joined the Giants from Fresno on June 15, and Bochy said the outfielder helped Giants better prepare to face Griffin.
"That's the difference in the game," Bochy said of the Giants preparing to face Griffin. "With video, our advance scouts, we're able to get all this information, but what it comes down to is that they have to throw it over the plate and you have to hit it. Sometimes you put too much into not having enough on the kid."
Jay Lee is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.