3/9/2013 6:59 P.M. ET
Giants slate 'B' game for Kickham, Heston
By Chris Haft / MLB.com
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- With two of their starting pitching prospects needing work, the Giants scheduled a "B" game for Sunday morning against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The game is scheduled to last six innings, enabling the Giants to allocate three innings apiece to left-hander Mike Kickham and right-hander Chris Heston, ranked as the team's Nos. 12 and 8 prospects, respectively. The pair of 24-year-olds, who thrived at Double-A Richmond last year, must continue to develop their endurance for the regular season. Kickham, 11-10 with a 3.05 ERA at Richmond, has pitched three innings in two outings. Heston, 9-8 with a 2.24 ERA for the Flying Squirrels, has logged 2 2/3 innings in two appearances.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy noted with a trace of amusement that the game could last seven innings. Bochy said that Arizona might reserve an inning for Josh Booty, the former Louisiana State University quarterback who emerged from MLB Network's reality series "The Next Knuckler" to earn a spot in D-backs camp.
Lopez pitches inning in return from bruised hand
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Left-hander Javier Lopez made his Cactus League debut Saturday, demonstrating his recovery from a bruised pitching hand.
Lopez, who worked the fifth inning and allowed one run on three singles while striking out two, felt upbeat.
"I definitely felt like it was my first time out there in a while, but it's nice to get that one out of the way," said Lopez, who expressed satisfaction with his ability to throw his offspeed pitches for strikes. "It's on to bigger and better things now."
Lopez, 3-0 with a 2.50 ERA and seven saves in 70 appearances last year, said that he has ample time to sharpen his skills sufficiently by Opening Day. The Giants begin the season April 1 at Los Angeles.
Lopez has continued to play catch with left-hander Madison Bumgarner, whose wicked throw struck him on the bare hand Feb. 19 and caused his injury.
"I gotta get back on that horse and go to work," said Lopez, not realizing how accurate he was with his equine reference to the 6-foot-5, 235-pound Bumgarner. "I can't let the young guy get the best of me yet."
Lincecum 'all set to go' after simulated game
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Tim Lincecum comfortably threw 32 pitches Saturday in a simulated game as he passed the final test for resuming Cactus League activity.
Lincecum, who missed two starts due to a blister on the middle finger of his right (throwing) hand, will rejoin the rotation Tuesday night when the Giants entertain the San Diego Padres.
"He's all set to go now," manager Bruce Bochy said. "Good day for Timmy."
San Francisco's No. 3 starter admitted that being temporarily sidelined frustrated him.
"You kind of get into the rhythm of things when spring starts and then all of a sudden you run into something like this, especially as stupid as this can be, that keeps you from doing something that you should be doing all day and every day," Lincecum said. "But to get back out there and know that it's not going to be an issue from here on out -- at least I hope it's not -- makes me feel good."
Facing Minor Leaguers Brock Bond, Gary Brown and Nick Noonan, Lincecum threw his entire repertoire of pitches, indicating that his finger's condition had improved considerably. Lincecum totaled three strikeouts, victimizing Noonan twice and Brown once.
"I feel like my timing is definitely good, considering the time off that I had," Lincecum said. "I didn't feel like anything was too far off."
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.