Notes: 'Giants Idol' brings more laughs

Notes: 'Giants Idol' returns for more laughs

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Sunday morning's lineup at Scottsdale Stadium included Will Ferrell, Frank Sinatra and Hank Williams Jr.

Well, at least reasonable facsimiles of them.

The team again staged "Giants Idol," the two-day "American Idol" takeoff that features mostly rookies, benefits charity and bolsters camaraderie. Last year's inaugural event raised $6,000 for a local charity and proved to be a hit among players, who valued the bonding it provided as well as the hilarity.

"We had some good laughs today," manager Bruce Bochy said.

This year's opening round lacked the showstopping moments generated last year, when Travis Ishikawa discarded his tear-off pants to reveal Speedo underwear, Brian Wilson delivered a darkly intense rendition of Billy Idol's "White Wedding" and Barry Bonds, portraying "Idol" judge Paula Abdul, emerged from the clubhouse in drag. This time, there was much more lip-synching than actual singing -- which would have been off-key anyway. And it was Barry Zito's turn to wear a wig and falsies as Abdul.

Most of the entertainment value sprang from infielder Rich Aurilia, who spun the day's best lines while filling the role of "Idol" judge Simon Cowell:

"It's going to be a long year in Connecticut for you," Aurilia told Kevin Frandsen, referring to the Giants' Double-A affiliate, after the utilityman adapted Ferrell's "Anchorman" routine for the song "Afternoon Delight."

After outfielder Ben Copeland labored through the Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Around the World" and revealed that a tattoo on his torso read "Born Bad," Aurilia said, "That explains it."

Pitchers Oscar Montero and Osiris Matos wore outlandish costumes -- Montero dressed in drag, Matos donned a green fright wig -- to act out the Spanish song "Turn Around."

Besides Montero and Matos, the other performers also threw considerable effort into their outfits. Capturing the "Anchorman" look, Frandsen sported a sky-blue blazer, a white turtleneck and checked double-knit slacks to enhance his wig and fake mustache. Frandsen was especially proud of his wig: "I wore it all day [Saturday] just to get accustomed to it."

Copeland was bare-chested except for a purple vest and a striped tie, and he completed his rocker garb with skintight faux black leather pants cut off below the knee. Mouthing "Fly Me To The Moon," right-hander Tim Lincecum looked the part of Sinatra as he wore a simple dark suit and a fedora while clutching a cigarette and what was supposed to be a stiff drink in his right hand. Right-hander Matt Palmer, who relied more on his own voice than a recording, sang Williams' "Country Boy Can Survive" and looked the part with his replica 10-gallon hat, overalls and boots.

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The "competition" continues Monday. Fred Lewis, Eugenio Velez, Steve Holm, Eddy Martinez-Esteve and Ivan Ochoa will be the headliners.

Hennessey adjusts: Last season was full of new experiences for Brad Hennessey, and this spring brings another, since he's probably not going to be groomed as a starter.

But being pushed to the bullpen -- most likely in long relief -- doesn't bother Hennessey, who has chafed in the past about his lack of opportunities to start. What he really wants is a steady job, after switching among short relief, long relief and starting in 2006.

"I'm just looking forward to having one role," said Hennessey, 27. Changing roles last season, he said, "took a toll on me. Your arm has no way to adapt to that. Hopefully we'll be a little more set in our roles this year. I think it'll be a lot more beneficial in that your arm can stay on one setting."

Hennessey had started exclusively through four seasons in the Majors and Minors until last season, when he was 1-2 with a 3.32 ERA and one save in 22 relief stints.

"I can build off that experience," said Hennessey, who also started 12 games and finished 5-6 with a 4.26 ERA. "I still look forward to starting one day. I don't know if that will happen, but we'll see."

Given the wear and tear an average season places upon any pitching staff, Hennessey almost surely will start again. Until then, he admitted that coping with the built-in uncertainty of long relief will challenge him.

"If your starters are going deep into games, you're not being used very often, so it's hard to gauge when you can throw on the side," he said. "Maintaining sharpness would be the most difficult thing about that."

Pitching matchups: Bochy said that the intrasquad games Tuesday and Wednesday will last only three to four innings and will feature rookies. Joining Lincecum, a previously announced starter, on one squad of pitchers will be Matos and Justin Hedrick. Palmer, Kelyn Acosta and Montero will pitch for the other side.

Still ill: Second baseman Ray Durham remained sidelined with flu-like symptoms for the second consecutive day, although he appeared briefly in the clubhouse.

Chris Haft is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.