Rainout provides respite for Giants at trip's end

Rainout provides respite for Giants at trip's end

Rainout provides respite for Giants at trip's end

CINCINNATI -- After rain postponed the Giants' series finale Thursday against the Cincinnati Reds, a senior member of San Francisco's traveling party strolled through the visitors' clubhouse and said, "That's as good as a win."

That was no exaggeration, given the Giants' woes on their three-city trip. Remaining idle was preferable to absorbing another setback. Their 1-8 finish was their worst for a nine-game journey since Sept. 15-25, 2006, when they also went 1-8.

Since leaving home, the Giants endured the following:

• Sinking to last place in the National League West standings;

• Being no-hit by Cincinnati's Homer Bailey on Tuesday;

• Swallowing two walk-off defeats;

• Losing center fielder Angel Pagan for possibly the rest of the season due to hamstring surgery;

• Getting swept in a three-game series by the Dodgers.

The Giants' troubles revolved around their offense, which averaged two runs per game and generated a .185 batting average during the trip. San Francisco will return home to face the Dodgers and the same three starters they confronted during Los Angeles' sweep: Hyun-Jin Ryu, Stephen Fife and Clayton Kershaw. That trio combined to win two decisions while allowing six runs and 16 hits in 21 1/3 innings.

So matters won't get easier for the Giants. But they will begin the Dodgers series with their two most effective starters: Matt Cain, who would have pitched Sunday, and Madison Bumgarner, who got pushed back from Friday to Saturday. Chad Gaudin likely will be reinstated from the 15-day disabled list to pitch Sunday's series finale.

"That's the plan right now," manager Bruce Bochy said.

Bochy cited the options for rescheduling Thursday's game, which include: playing on Sept. 30, the day after the regular season ends; scheduling a day-night doubleheader in San Francisco during the Reds' July 22-24 visit to AT&T Park; or reconvening Aug. 29, which is a scheduled off-day for both teams. That day, the clubs could meet in Cincinnati or Denver, since the Giants conclude a road series against the Rockies on Aug. 28 and the Reds open a three-game set at Coors Field on Aug. 30.

Playing on Aug. 29, regardless of venue, would require approval from both clubs, since adding a game on that date would force each team to play 34 consecutive days. That's 10 over the limit when a scheduling revision is in effect.

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