DENVER -- Catcher Bengie Molina's absence from the Giants' lineup Thursday against the Colorado Rockies was expected. Right fielder Randy Winn's absence wasn't.
Manager Bruce Bochy simply wanted to rest both hard-working regulars. This day game following a night game provided an excellent opportunity to do so.
Molina entered Thursday ranked seventh in the National League in hitting (.321), but went 0-for-8 in the first two games of the Colorado series. Until the Giants were blanked, 1-0, on Wednesday, Molina had driven in a run for five consecutive games.
"Bengie needs a break," Bochy said, pointing out that Molina started three of San Francisco's four games in Washington's intense heat and humidity in the Giants' previous series.
Winn needed one, too. He had appeared in 42 consecutive games, starting the last 38 in a row. Before going 0-for-3 Wednesday, the switch-hitter batted .400 (12-for-30) in seven games, raising his average from .291 to .305.
"I thought last night he showed signs of fatigue," Bochy said.
Steve Holm replaced Molina, while John Bowker started his sixth game in right field and first since April 20. With Bowker in the outfield, Rich Aurilia played first base.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.