Notes: Frandsen gets the call

Notes: Frandsen gets the call

SAN FRANCISCO -- Kevin Frandsen sat idly in his Portland hotel room with roommate Dan Ortmeier on Wednesday afternoon when he realized he had missed a call from Giants director of player personnel Bob Evans.

"Dan could tell something was going on," Frandsen said. "Bob told me I was going to the big leagues, and I honestly couldn't tell you what else he said after that."

Frandsen said it took awhile before he finally calmed himself down enough to gather his thoughts and make it to AT&T Park to make his Major League debut against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday night.

Frandsen, taking the roster spot of the injured Ray Durham, was immediately inserted into the lineup at second base, batting second.

"Tonight is going to be a big night," said Frandsen, who made an impression on the Giants the past two Spring Trainings, before Friday's game. "I'm just going to play hard and do my normal thing."

It will also be an emotional night for Frandsen, who lost his older brother, David ("D.J."), to a form of kidney cancer known as Wilms' tumor in September 2004 and has a picture of him in his locker.

"It's been hard," Frandsen said. "I just have to keep strong mentally. If he were here, he'd be all smiles but he'd also be telling me, 'You better win and get some hits.'"

Frandsen expected at least 100 family and friends at the park for his debut, though his college coach, Sam Piraro, who survived a bout with cancer, won't be able to attend because the San Jose State Spartans are playing in Reno.

"He was one of the first guys I called," Frandsen said. "Coach gave me the opportunity when no one else did and he's what led me here."

Frandsen's journey began as a Whiffle ball player with his brother on a beach in Northern California. The brothers would play Giants vs. Giants or Giants vs. A's.

"From stick ball at the wharf to playing at AT&T Park," Frandsen marveled.

Frandsen became one of Giants manager Felipe Alou's favorite guys during Spring Training.

"He's been getting better in every aspect of the game," Alou said. "He's a smart guy who hits to all fields and hits with power to the gaps. He's right there with some of the guys I've managed; [Jose] Vidro, [Delino] Shields, Ray [Durham]."

Omar Vizquel, Frandsen's double-play partner during the spring, still remembers his Major League debut in 1989 with the Seattle Mariners.

"We were playing in Oakland and I made an error in my first game," Vizquel said. "A couple of hitters later, Dave Parker hit a three-run homer. I thought it was cool to be playing on the same field with the world champions."

Vizquel said there are things you never forget about your debut and he thinks Frandsen is ready.

"He showed a lot of improvement over the last year," he said. "This with be a great test for him. He deserves a shot at it."

Alou on Bonds: The Giants manager can get a little greedy at times, though no one could fault him for wanting Barry Bonds to hit a few more home runs.

"I want to see him hit No. 714 as soon as possible," he said. "I'd like to see it now, this weekend. If he's pitched to, he could probably do it."

Alou also hopes the milestone will be accomplished at home.

"It would be great for the fans who like him so much and respect him," Alou said. "But it's hard to time it. He likes to hit home runs no matter where."

Imminent return: Left-hander Noah Lowry pitched at Class A San Jose on Friday night in what Giants head trainer Stan Conte called a "real test." Lowry had an 85-pitch limit, and how he comes out of the outing will determine when he can rejoin the rotation.

"If he gets to 85 pitches, we can look at a five-day rotation," Conte said. "On paper that means Wednesday, probably in [Triple-A] Fresno, but that hasn't been decided yet. [Friday night] is the real test for me in regards to the injury. If he pitches another rehab, that's more for baseball purposes."

Against the High Desert Mavericks, Lowry went 4 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing five hits and one walk while striking out nine. He has been on the 15-day disabled list since April 7 with a right oblique (side) strain. He was the only Giants pitcher to make all 33 of his starts last year.

Extra bases: Former first lady Rosalynn Carter, age 78, will be at AT&T Park on Monday to participate in the San Francisco Immunization Coalition's 10th anniversary fundraiser and campaign kickoff. ... Former Giants closer Robb Nen will be honored Saturday when his 300th career save will be officially commemorated on the Giants' portwalk behind the right-field wall with a plaque. The ceremony takes place at noon. ... Giants outfielder Steve Finley will appear at the Toys "R" Us store in San Rafael on Saturday between 6:30 p.m.-8 p.m. PT.

Up next: Right-hander Brad Hennessey (2-0, 2.70 ERA) will make his third start of the season on Saturday at 1:05 p.m. PT against Juan Cruz (0-0, 3.00 ERA) and the Arizona Diamondbacks. Hennessey took Lowry's place in the rotation and has been a pleasant surprise. He appeared in 28 games with the Giants the past two years. He'll be making his third career appearance against the Diamondbacks.

Rick Eymer is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.