6/9/2013 9:56 P.M. ET
Bochy gives Perez first MLB start in center field
By Chris Haft / MLB.com
PHOENIX -- Assembling Sunday's lineup required more thought for Giants manager Bruce Bochy than met the eye.
Giving Juan Perez his Major League debut wasn't just a matter of writing the rookie's name on the lineup card. Although it made sense to play Perez in center field, where he played extensively in five Minor League seasons, Bochy called Triple-A Fresno manager Bob Mariano to learn as much as he could about Perez's defensive tendencies. Bochy could have assigned Perez to left field but opted to play him in center, where he made an impressive catch at the wall to end the first inning Sunday.
"Left field is the toughest position of the three when you haven't played it much," Bochy said, referring to the difficult angles batted balls often take toward that spot. Perez made just 34 Minor League appearances in left.
Bochy also installed Perez in the seventh spot to separate left-handed batters Brandon Belt and Brandon Crawford and give the Giants' order some variety.
With Pablo Sandoval resting his strained left foot, Bochy had a middle-of-the-order spot to fill. He put Joaquin Arias, Sandoval's replacement at third base, in the fifth position. Bochy reasoned that Arias, a right-handed batter, was as good a choice as any to use in that spot against Arizona left-hander Tyler Skaggs. Though Arias entered Sunday hitting .222 against both lefties and righties this year, last season he batted .303 off lefties, compared with .240 against righties.
Elevating Belt to the fifth spot might have made sense, but Bochy preferred to leave the first baseman sixth, where he was likely to feel most comfortable.
Sandoval may need DL stint to rest ailing foot
PHOENIX -- Manager Bruce Bochy acknowledged that the Giants are considering a stint on the 15-day disabled list for third baseman Pablo Sandoval, who's been bothered by a strained left foot.
Sandoval didn't play Sunday, one day after he aggravated the injury that he originally incurred May 30. Sandoval underwent an MRI, his second since being hurt.
"The MRI didn't show any other damage, but he's pretty sore," Bochy said.
Asked whether he, Giants general manager Brian Sabean and the club's medical staff might consider a DL assignment for Sandoval, Bochy said, "It's a possibility. I'll be honest. We need to get this [injury] to calm down. Sometimes you get an injury like this and you try to get through it and you just make it worse and you end up losing the player for a longer period of time."
Sandoval offered no insight into his condition. "I don't know. I'm not a trainer," he said dryly.
Having spent time on the disabled list during each of the previous two seasons with hamate bone injuries -- besides a second-half trip to the DL last year with a strained left hamstring -- Sandoval turned somewhat philosophical when he considered the possibility of being sidelined again.
"It happens," he said. "I've been through this situation. ... You want to try to be healthy but something's going to happen. It's part of the game. You have to keep focused and positive to get better every day."
Sandoval, who leads the National League All-Star fan voting at his position, is batting .289 with a team-high 37 RBIs in 57 games.
D-backs' Goldschmidt catching Bochy's eye
PHOENIX -- Giants manager Bruce Bochy didn't explicitly say anything Sunday about Paul Goldschmidt's chances of making the National League All-Star team. But when it comes time to select reserves for the Midsummer Classic squad, don't be at all surprised if Bochy, who will pilot the NL All-Stars, makes sure that Goldschmidt is among the selections.
Bochy referred to Goldschmidt, who has spent less than two seasons in the Majors, as a "difference maker" and "impact player." Said Bochy, "You just hope your pitchers make pitches against him, particularly late in the ballgame."
By any measure, Goldschmidt has been impressive. Entering Sunday, he was hitting .315 with four homers and 19 RBIs in his previous 20 games against the Giants. He had driven in at least one run in eight consecutive games, tying Luis Gonzalez's 2002 franchise record. Goldschmidt also sported a 3.7 WAR (wins above replacement), second in the Majors only to Milwaukee's Carlos Gomez at 3.9.
"He's an all-around ballplayer," Bochy said of Goldschmidt, citing his baserunning and his defense at first base. "I don't know him, but he looks like he's got great makeup."
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.