SAN FRANCISCO -- Back in the Giants clubhouse during a rainy afternoon in the Bay Area, Pablo Sandoval laughed as he gave reporters an honest, one-word critique of how he felt at the plate in his first rehab game with High-A San Jose: "Lost."
Sandoval went 0-for-3 with two groundouts and a strikeout Friday night for the San Jose Giants and said his timing as a hitter was way off, but he felt fine physically other than a sore right forearm, which was simply a product of not putting the muscles to work recently, and had no trouble defensively at third base.
Sandoval only hit left-handed with no problems or pain as he approaches the end of his recovery from surgery to remove a broken hamate bone in his right hand. He was originally scheduled to return to San Jose on Saturday night for his second rehab game, but wet weather scuttled that plan. He'll instead play the first game of Triple-A Fresno's doubleheader Sunday.
As of Saturday afternoon, the plan for Sandoval's rehab assignment remained the same: five games with about 20 to 30 at-bats. However, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said, they will continue to evaluate Sandoval on a day-to-day basis. If Sandoval is ready after the designated time period, he will rejoin the Giants. If not, he'll continue his rehab assignment.
"What we'd like to stay away from, and sometimes you don't have that option, is to bring him back too early [so] that they're trying to find their way and their timing up here," Bochy said.
Sandoval's 0-for-3 showing just so happened to come amid an offensive explosion for the San Jose Giants, as every other hitter in their lineup recorded a hit and they scored 13 runs on 20 hits. Sandoval was highly complimentary of the High-A club, and Bochy joked about what that meant for Sandoval's future rehab starts.
"He's killing 'em," Bochy said before the decision to keep Sandoval out Saturday night. "He may not crack the lineup tonight."