8/3/2013 6:54 P.M. ET
Blanco undaunted by Tropicana Field's quirks
By Chris Haft / MLB.com
ST. PETERSBURG -- Giants center fielder Gregor Blanco ignored his unfamiliarity with Tropicana Field to make a couple of challenging defensive plays in Friday night's 4-1 victory over Tampa Bay.
Blanco looked comfortable defensively despite playing his first game at the domed ballpark. He raced to the warning track to haul in Wil Myers' fifth-inning drive with two on and one out. Myers was so confident he had homered that he tossed his bat aside in a "mission accomplished" gesture.
"The ball looks small when it's hit that high, and it's tough to read with the white ceiling," Blanco said Saturday. "It's definitely different. Different from Arizona and Houston [where ballparks have retractable roofs]."
Three innings later, Myers tried hitting one in front of Blanco, who charged the blooper and plucked it just above the FieldTurf playing surface. It was the first out in Santiago Casilla's perfect eighth inning.
"I was playing a little back," Blanco said. "I knew Casilla was throwing. If somebody catches one on the barrel, it's going to be well-hit."
Bumgarner's run of success in good company
ST. PETERSBURG -- Madison Bumgarner now has more in common with Gaylord Perry besides pitching for the Giants and being from North Carolina.
Bumgarner's nine-game streak of pitching at least seven innings and allowing three or fewer runs is the longest by a Giant since Perry built a 10-start streak between April 13 and May 25, 1969.
It's essential to use the term "start." Perry appeared once in relief during that stretch, as workhorse starters of that era frequently did. In fact, Perry completed nine games in his streak and lasted 8 1/3 innings in the only game he didn't finish.
Bumgarner's streak is tied for the second-longest in the Major Leagues since 1996. Arizona's Randy Johnson pitched 14 games in a row in which he allowed three runs or fewer while working seven innings or more in 1999. Philadelphia's Cliff Lee (2001), Detroit's Justin Verlander (2001) and Minnesota's Johan Santana (2004) also had nine-game streaks.
Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon, who hadn't seen Bumgarner pitch, was thoroughly impressed with the left-hander.
"He knows how to elevate [pitches] and how to get underneath a right-handed hitter," Maddon said. "He could throw a strike and he had great poise."
Peguero likely to get September callup
ST. PETERSBURG -- Though manager Bruce Bochy said that he and the Giants' decision-makers haven't started discussing the subject of September callups, he acknowledged that outfielder Francisco Peguero could be part of the group receiving late-season experience with San Francisco.
Peguero, ranked as the Giants' No. 10 prospect by MLB.com, hit .188 (3-for-16) in a six-game stint with the Giants earlier this season. He also played 17 games for San Francisco in 2012, posting identical hitting totals (3-for-16, .188).
"There's a chance we should see him in September. A good chance," Bochy said.
Should Peguero return, however, San Francisco's well-stocked outfield will get even more crowded, forcing Bochy to make tougher decisions regarding playing time.
Peguero entered Saturday batting .303 with three homers and 21 RBIs in 48 games for Triple-A Fresno.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.