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Belt sits in favor of getting Arias playing time

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Brandon Belt didn't start Sunday, but he wasn't benched.

That is what Bruce Bochy wanted to make clear in explaining why the first baseman wasn't starting for the first time since missing two games of the opening series because of a stomach illness.

Belt is struggling, batting .183 with no home runs and five RBIs. He has five hits in his last 24 at-bats.

Joaquin Arias started at first and batted sixth in the lineup. He entered the game 3-for-12 this season. Against Padres starter Eric Stults, Arias is 4-for-10 with one home run.

"This isn't a case where he's getting benched," Bochy said of Belt. "But we need to get Arias out there. [Belt] might miss a couple of games."

Bochy said he and Belt spoke privately before Sunday's game about "a couple of things, between Brandon and I."

Belt is a career .209 hitter in the month of April.

Willie Bans is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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