ATLANTA -- The Giants made a flurry of roster moves Tuesday, partly to squeeze right-hander Ryan Sadowski onto the active roster but also in an effort to stimulate their ever-questionable offense.
San Francisco placed infielder Rich Aurilia on the 15-day disabled list with a right big toe infection and optioned infielder Kevin Frandsen to Triple-A Fresno. Sadowski was officially recalled from Class A San Jose to start Tuesday night's game against the Atlanta Braves.
Also, infielder Matt Downs was recalled from Fresno, where he had hit .316 with six doubles, two home runs and 12 RBIs in his previous 14 games. Manager Bruce Bochy said that Downs, who hit .194 in 12 games during a previous stint with the Giants, will receive a chance to settle in at second base.
"We'll see if we can get some offense going here," Bochy said.
Evidence suggested that the Giants didn't finalize their decision to summon Downs until relatively late Monday. Downs said that he wasn't removed from Fresno's game at Salt Lake City until the ninth inning. Had they been certain of his promotion earlier in the day, he likely would have been removed from Fresno's lineup to avoid risking injury.
Bochy emphatically denied that Downs was brought to the Majors and installed in the lineup to be showcased for a possible trade before the July 31 deadline.
Bochy indicated that the Giants are more comfortable with Juan Uribe, their primary second baseman in recent weeks, as the top backup at second, shortstop and third base, which was the role he occupied to begin the season. Bochy noted that Uribe probably will start at shortstop for Edgar Renteria on Wednesday or Thursday and might continue to do so every four to five games. Uribe entered Tuesday hitting .292 overall but was 2-for-12 (.167) in his previous three games.
Aurilia has handled that utility role in the past, but has played only the infield corners this year. Lately he hasn't played much at all, appearing in five games since June 27. He pinch-hit in Monday's ninth inning and lined a single to left field, hiking his batting average to .210 in 46 games with two home runs and 15 RBIs.
Aurilia recently had been seen walking around the clubhouse with his right ankle taped, but Bochy said that the toe infection was unrelated. Aurilia declined to comment about his injury and referred reporters to the Giants' athletic training staff. But head athletic trainer Dave Groeschner also divulged no details, pointing out that Aurilia didn't sign the waiver authorizing the medical staff to discuss his condition.
Frandsen collected three hits in six at-bats as he concluded his third stint of the season with the Giants. But he also committed an eighth-inning fielding error in Monday's series opener and was hitting .128 overall in 16 games with the Giants.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.