Pence gets big welcome from Giants fans

Pence gets big welcome from Giants fans

SAN FRANCISCO -- Hunter Pence made his Giants debut in Wednesday's 2-1 loss to the Mets, receiving a thunderous standing ovation from the AT&T Park crowd when he came to bat in the bottom of the first.

"It was awesome," Pence said of the ovation. "There was a ton of energy. The fans are great out here, and it was pretty loud and crazy."

Pence popped out to Mets first baseman Ike Davis in foul territory in that at-bat and finished 0-for-4, though he did reach first base on a wild pitch after striking out in the fourth.

"We'll give him a chance to get settled in," manager Bruce Bochy said. "There's been a lot of hoopla. We're excited to have him and he'll get settled in."

Starting in right field and batting fifth, the two-time All-Star said he didn't feel himself pressing at the plate despite the adrenaline of making his Giants debut.

"I might have been trying to calm myself down too much, trying to relax too much," Pence said. "There was a lot of adrenaline, and hopefully I can get back in the flow and starting swinging the bat well."

Pence came in early before the game to scope out his new spot in right field, which has various angles on the wall and a deep right-center-field gap known as Triples Alley. He notched his first out when Jason Bay flied out to him to end the top of the first.

"It was kind of funny," Pence said. "It was really high and really slow and it almost was like time stopped for a second. It was the most routine fly ball, but with the suspense, it was funny."

The former Astros and Phillies outfielder said he has always considered AT&T Park to be his favorite road ballpark and noted that he was especially excited to get the outfield hecklers on his side after years of playing as a visiting player.

"Chicago and here are the two wildest," Pence said before the game. "There's a lot of hecklers here, and there are some pretty clever ones."

Pence also came in early to take swings in the batting cage before the team's usual stretching session and batting practice.

"He's loaded with energy. If you see him, he's always moving," Bochy said before the game. "After a long flight yesterday, he still wanted to work out, and he came in early because he wanted to take some swings in the cage."