Nunez expects to be ready for Opening Day

Nunez expects to be ready for Opening Day

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Giants third baseman Eduardo Nunez was in good spirits Thursday after returning from San Francisco where he had two cortisone shots. Nunez's recurring shoulder soreness flared up earlier in the week, and he flew to San Francisco on Tuesday for an MRI and an anticipated cortisone shot.

Nunez got one shot in his rotator cuff and another in the back of his shoulder, but downplayed the injury and anticipates being ready to play on Opening Day.

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Owen Perkins is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Giants on Thursday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Smith says he'll undergo Tommy John surgery

Giants reliever was mulling procedure vs. trying to rehab elbow tear

Smith says he'll undergo Tommy John surgery

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Giants reliever Will Smith said Friday that he will have Tommy John surgery on his left elbow, according to multiple reports.

Smith had gone to California this week to get a second opinion about the elbow. When he returned on Thursday, he brought the news that both doctors recommended surgery.

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Owen Perkins is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Giants on Thursday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Moore has short night in matchup with King Felix

Moore has short night in matchup with King Felix

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Mariners blanked the Giants for six innings Thursday, riding a masterful pitching performance behind their ace, Felix Hernandez. The Giants could muster only one hit through the first six innings as Seattle went on to a 9-2 triumph.

Hernandez was in rare form in his first start since pitching a pair of games for Team Venezuela in the World Baseball Classic. The Mariners' Opening Day starter was perfect through 3 2/3 innings before Jarrett Parker hit a grounder to third that went into left field for a double. The Mariners infield was shifted far to the right side of the diamond, leave a gaping hole at third. No other Giant reached base in Hernandez's six innings on the hill.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast.

Owen Perkins is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Giants on Thursday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants grant release to infielder Beckham

Giants grant release to infielder Beckham

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Giants got one step closer to a final roster Thursday when the club granted Gordon Beckham's request to be released from his Minor League contract.

"We informed him today that he wasn't going to make the Opening Day roster, and as is his right, he requested that we grant him his release so he can look for some other opportunities," general manager Bobby Evans said before Thursday evening's game with the Mariners. "So we let him go, and he'll begin pursuing some of those other scenarios."

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Owen Perkins is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Giants on Thursday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Span, Hwang homer in win over Brewers

Span, Hwang homer in win over Brewers

PHOENIX -- Denard Span and Jae-gyun Hwang each hit a two-run home run, Hwang's a go-ahead shot during a three-run seventh inning, and the Giants beat the Brewers, 6-4, on Wednesday at Maryvale Baseball Park.

Brewers starter Jimmy Nelson pitched effectively into the sixth inning and was in line for the win before the Giants rallied with two outs in the seventh against reliever Carlos Torres. Tim Federowicz doubled home a run to tie the game at 4, and Hwang followed with a homer to right field.

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Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bonds returns to help 'keep the tradition alive'

All-time home run leader rejoined Giants on Tuesday as special advisor

Bonds returns to help 'keep the tradition alive'

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Barry Bonds has much to share with baseball: His place in a great family lineage. His pride in the city and team he represented for 15 years. His own stature as a hitter and the vast knowledge behind it.

These were the primary factors behind Bonds' decision to rejoin the Giants as a special advisor to club president and chief executive officer Larry Baer, a move that the all-time home run leader cordially discussed as he reported for his first day of work Wednesday.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Nunez flies to SF for shoulder treatment

Cain continues battle for rotation spot against Brewers

Nunez flies to SF for shoulder treatment

PHOENIX -- Eduardo Nunez is experiencing a recurrence of the right shoulder soreness that has limited the third baseman's activity for much of Spring Training.

Giants manager Bruce Bochy said after San Francisco's 6-4 Cactus League victory over Milwaukee on Wednesday that Nunez flew to San Francisco on Tuesday to receive a cortisone injection and will be sidelined for three days.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Crawford scores game-winner, making up for mistake

Japan bobble lets in winning run after US baserunning gaffe

Crawford scores game-winner, making up for mistake

Brandon Crawford had a bit of atoning to do as he sprinted home with the game-winning run in Team USA's 2-1 win against Japan in the World Baseball Classic semifinals on Tuesday night.

After what could have been a costly gaffe committed the play before, Crawford needed some good fortune to score the deciding run on Adam Jones' groundout to third, which he did after the ball was bobbled by Nobuhiro Matsuda.

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Joe Trezza is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @joetrezz. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hundley homers twice, Bumgarner solid in win

Hundley homers twice, Bumgarner solid in win

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Nick Hundley, whose hitting skills the Giants coveted, belted a pair of home runs and lifted San Francisco to a 5-3 Cactus League victory Tuesday over the San Diego Padres.

Hundley's three-run homer off Kevin Quackenbush in the seventh inning erased San Diego's 2-1 lead. Hundley also homered in the second inning for San Francisco's lone hit in five innings off Padres starter Trevor Cahill.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bonds joins Giants as special advisor to CEO

Bonds joins Giants as special advisor to CEO

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Barry Bonds made his seemingly inevitable return to the Giants on Tuesday, when the organization announced that it had hired baseball's all-time home run leader as a special advisor to club president and chief executive officer Larry Baer.

Bonds is expected to discuss his role on Wednesday, when he's due to arrive at Spring Training camp to help provide instruction for a week. A Giants news release said that Bonds also will represent the organization at various community events in San Francisco and will tour the team's Minor League system to work with prospects.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Anthony Castrovince

Protecting Bumgarner a wise move for Giants

Veteran lefty doing what he can to stay fresh for Opening Day

Protecting Bumgarner a wise move for Giants

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- It was a strange sight Tuesday, the kind of sight the exhibition schedule tends to specialize in: Madison Bumgarner left a start after just two innings.

Because we're so close to Opening Day, this would ordinarily be a siren-summoning situation for Giants fans -- especially on a day when the club was already dealing with injuries to lefty reliever Will Smith and Michael Morse. But in this case, the abrupt scoreless outing, in which he allowed two hits while striking out three in the Giants' 5-3 win, was a byproduct of Bumgarner's desire to see some Padres hitters before ceding some innings to Ty Blach and throwing the rest of his pitches in the bullpen at Scottsdale Stadium.

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Anthony Castrovince has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2004. Read his columns and follow him on Twitter at @Castrovince. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cueto allows 1 hit in 2nd start; Jones homers late

Cueto allows 1 hit in 2nd start; Jones homers late

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Reynaldo Lopez matched Johnny Cueto pitch for pitch during the Giants' 3-2 victory over the White Sox on Monday afternoon at Camelback Ranch.

Lopez stands as Chicago's No. 4 prospect and the No. 46 prospect in all of baseball, per MLBPipeline.com, with 11 games and 44 innings pitched at the Major League level. Cueto stands as one of the true aces in Major League Baseball. So it was a pretty good day for the White Sox rebuild, even in the scope of Cactus League competition.

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Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cain more mentor than rival for young Blach

Veteran showing prospect the ropes while competing with him for SF's 5th-starter job

Cain more mentor than rival for young Blach

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Matt Cain and Ty Blach have remained comrades more than challengers as they jointly pursue the Giants' fifth-starter's role. Their friendly rivalry is heavy on the friendliness and light on the rivalry. Their competition drives them but doesn't consume them.

Cain, the longest-tenured Giant who joined the team in August 2005, freely dispenses advice to Blach, the 26-year-old who maintains his rookie status. Never mind that Blach conceivably could adopt the lessons he learned from Cain and use them to eclipse his benefactor. Cain knows simply that he's doing the right thing by nurturing Blach, the Giants' 11th-ranked prospect according to MLBPipeline.com.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

With no trip to Classic, Cueto stays on path

With no trip to Classic, Cueto stays on path

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Giants right-hander Johnny Cueto showed the World Baseball Classic what it was missing Monday by displaying close to his top form in a five-inning effort against the White Sox in San Francisco's 3-2 Cactus League victory.

Cueto yielded one hit -- a fourth-inning triple by Peter Bourjos, who scored on Leury Garcia's sacrifice fly. Including a start in a Minor League exhibition last Wednesday, Cueto has surrendered two runs and six hits in his past 10 2/3 innings. That's a 1.69 ERA.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants stymied as Samardzija allows 6 runs

Giants stymied as Samardzija allows 6 runs

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Milwaukee right-hander Zach Davies maintained a perfect game through four innings Sunday as the Brewers downed the San Francisco Giants, 6-4, in a Cactus League exhibition.

Davies, Milwaukee's projected No. 2 starter who entered the game with a 7.27 ERA, lost his perfecto when Brandon Belt singled to open the fifth inning. Eduardo Nunez added an infield single, but Davis escaped the inning unscathed. He ultimately lasted 5 1/3 innings, walking none and striking out six.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants send down promising Arroyo, Beede

Top prospects impressive before reassignment to Minor League camp

Giants send down promising Arroyo, Beede

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Giants announced Sunday that infielder Christian Arroyo and right-hander Tyler Beede were reassigned to Minor League camp. Both left their mark before departing.

Arroyo, the organization's top position-player prospect, drilled a two-run, opposite-field homer to right in the ninth inning, making the final score in the Giants' 6-4 exhibition loss to Milwaukee more respectable. Beede, the Giants' No. 1 overall prospect, worked two scoreless innings.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Moore shuts down Mariners over 5 innings

Moore shuts down Mariners over 5 innings

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Consider Matt Moore among the Giants who probably wish they could start the regular season immediately.

Moore surrendered two hits in five shutout innings for the Giants in Saturday's 6-5 Cactus League loss to the Mariners at Peoria Stadium. Moore maintained a perfect game through 3 2/3 until Kyle Seager walked. Coincidentally, Kyle's brother, Corey, shattered Moore's no-hit bid last Aug. 25 at Dodger Stadium with two outs in the ninth inning.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tomlinson learning from vets fighting for utility job

Tomlinson learning from vets fighting for utility job

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The men who can hasten Kelby Tomlinson's big league career development are the same ones in position to block his progress.

Tomlinson, 26, would appear to be an ideal candidate for a utility infield role with the Giants. They know him, having kept him in the Majors for portions of the previous two seasons. He's handy, having gained experience at second base, shortstop and third base. He has appeared in each of those spots this spring while batting .300.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Parker, Marrero homer behind sharp Moore

Parker, Marrero homer behind sharp Moore

PEORIA, Ariz. -- The Mariners rallied for a 6-5 victory over the Giants on Saturday afternoon at Peoria Stadium on a day more defined by the stinginess of San Francisco starter Matt Moore and some opportunistic offense by both teams.

Trailing 5-3 heading into the bottom of the eighth inning, the Mariners loaded the bases before drawing two consecutive walks (one by Tyler O'Neill, one by Chantz Mack) and a Mike Freeman sacrifice fly that put them ahead.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB.

Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cain keeps himself in Giants' rotation equation

Cain keeps himself in Giants' rotation equation

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Right-hander Matt Cain looked easy to hit on Friday night, yet he was relatively difficult to score upon, and he maintained his candidacy for the No. 5 starting spot, allowing three runs on nine hits in 4 2/3 innings as Colorado prevailed, 5-1, over San Francisco.

Cain's ERA dipped to a still-high 8.40 from 9.58, and he has allowed 25 hits in 15 innings. Earlier this week, his apparent lack of deception prompted general manager Bobby Evans to express concern during a radio interview.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants have rough night vs. Rockies

Giants have rough night vs. Rockies

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Harrison Musgrave sustained his hopes of joining the Rockies' rotation by limiting the Giants to one hit in three innings, and Colorado prevailed, 5-1.

San Francisco's Matt Cain, vying for his own rotation spot, allowed three early runs but ended his 4 2/3-inning outing with five strikeouts.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, listen to podcasts and like his Facebook page.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Barry M. Bloom

Play Ball events target new, different places

MLB looking to introduce, teach sport to those on youth level

Play Ball events target new, different places

MESA, Ariz. -- Jordan Watson, a pitcher in the D-backs' organization, wishes there were Play Ball events like the one here on Friday morning when he was a kid. Watson had a hardscrabble life growing up in Oklahoma City, Okla., and baseball was his refuge.

"From the time my father took me out for my first catch when I was 3 years old, baseball was 24/7 to me," Watson told MLB.com. "He turned on a game and I still remember this. It was a Yankee game and I saw Derek Jeter play. Once I saw him play, I wanted to play. He did everything right. I didn't have the best upbringing, but it was a great outlet for me."

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Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Boomskie on Baseball. Follow @boomskie on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Pickup 6: Efficiency allows Bumgarner to stretch

Giants ace blanks Angels on 1 hit, but knows arm strength outweighs results

Pickup 6: Efficiency allows Bumgarner to stretch

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Madison Bumgarner's pitching line dazzled everybody except himself.

San Francisco's Opening Day starter worked six innings, an unusually high total for this juncture of Spring Training, in Wednesday's 7-4 Cactus League victory over the Los Angeles Angels. Bumgarner allowed one hit, Nolan Fontana's third-inning single. Bumgarner's efficiency with his pitches -- he threw approximately 70 -- enabled him to record quick outs, such as the popup he induced from Yunel Escobar on the game's first delivery. This, in turn, kept Bumgarner in the game longer.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bumgarner tosses 6 shutout innings; Morse clutch

Bumgarner tosses 6 shutout innings; Morse clutch

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Displaying the durability that made him a postseason hero, left-hander Madison Bumgarner surrendered one hit in six innings on Wednesday for the Giants, who responded to a late Angels rally and rode a pair of RBIs from Michael Morse to a 7-4 win at Scottsdale Stadium.

After the Angels tied the game with a four-run seventh, Morse sparked a three-run eighth with a go-ahead RBI single off Justin Miller, scoring Mac Williamson, who hit a one-out double.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kontos assumes role as bullpen elder statesman

Kontos assumes role as bullpen elder statesman

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The impact of the Giants' "Core Four" of relievers hasn't ebbed. George Kontos is perpetuating their legacy.

The Giants acquired Kontos from the Yankees in an April 2012 trade that sent catcher Chris Stewart to New York. Kontos came to resemble a fifth Beatle, averaging 50 appearances per season while occupying roles that were subordinate to the core of left-handers Jeremy Affeldt and Javier Lopez and right-handers Santiago Casilla and Sergio Romo.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Suarez brings versatility to Giants' pitching staff

Suarez brings versatility to Giants' pitching staff

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- The Giants aren't yet certain what to do with Albert Suarez. However, they seem to sense that keeping him on the pitching staff would be a fine idea.

Making his first Cactus League start Tuesday, Suarez yielded two runs and six hits in 2 2/3 innings as the Giants outlasted the Cleveland Indians, 6-5. The right-hander walked two but struck out four, displaying his usual array of lively deliveries.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.