SAN FRANCISCO -- Hoping they can avoid the fate they endured last season when Angel Pagan was sidelined, the Giants placed their center fielder and leadoff hitter on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday with a lower back strain.
Infielder Adam Duvall, the Pacific Coast League's home run leader, was recalled from Triple-A Fresno to replace Pagan on the active Major League roster.
Pagan injured his left hamstring on May 25, 2013, and didn't play again until Aug. 30. Tied for first place in the National League West when Pagan was injured, the Giants sank to fourth place, 6 1/2 games behind Los Angeles, by July 7. They trailed by a whopping 19 games when he returned to the lineup.
This year, the Giants have been reminded of Pagan's impact while losing 11 of 14 games entering Wednesday. He missed the last eight games in that stretch, six of which resulted in Giants defeats.
"We have to keep pushing," said Giants manager Bruce Bochy, whose club clung to a three-game division lead over Los Angeles as the day dawned. "We can't change what's happened."
Pagan's DL assignment is retroactive to June 15. That makes him eligible for reinstatement next Monday, a scheduled off-day. Bochy was non-committal regarding whether Pagan, who's batting .307, would be ready for activation at that time.
"He just wasn't coming around," Bochy said of the 32-year-old Pagan, adding that the club's medical staff no longer has to rush in helping the switch-hitter with his rehabilitation and treatment.
Besides hitting a league-high 23 homers, Duvall was batting .297 in 67 games. He ranked second in the PCL in RBIs (67) and slugging percentage (.620).
Bochy said that he'll try to give Duvall, 25, a start or two at first base, with Michael Morse likely moving to left field in those instances.
Though the PCL has a reputation as a hitter-friendly league, Bochy regarded Duvall's power as legitimate.
"I don't care where you are. That's a lot of home runs," Bochy said. "He has 'easy' power."