One of the heroes of the Giants’ championship last year is staying in the organization. The Giants announced today that Travis Ishikawa cleared waivers and has been outrighted to Triple-A Sacramento.
Ishikawa was designated for assignment recently when he came off the DL (back strain) but the Giants didn’t have room for him on the big-league roster. Manager Bruce Bochy said today he was “a little surprised” no team put in a claim on the left-handed hitter with some power who has played first base and left field.
“With what he did last year, I was a little surprised,” Bochy said. “I didn’t know what would happen, but thought there was a good chance we’d lose him.”
The Giants were spared having to part with a player who hit the pennant-clinching home run in Game 5 of the NLCS against the Cardinals. Ishikawa is expected to join the River Cats in Oklahoma City on Monday and be in uniform on Tuesday.
“I’m happy for the fact that he is going to stay with us,” Bochy said. “It’s nice to have depth. You feel terrible it hasn’t worked out to where he’s here, but the fact that he is going to stay (with the organization) is nice to know.”
▪ The Giants also welcomed another familiar face back into the fold: The team confirmed a national report that they signed utility man Kevin Frandsen to a minor-league deal, and that Frandsen is also headed to Triple-A Sacramento.
Frandsen was released by the Diamondbacks on Saturday after spending the first part of this season at Triple-A Reno, where he was batting .309 with two extra-base hits in 81 at-bats. Frandsen, 33, a San Jose native who was drafted by the Giants in 2004, played parts of four seasons with the Giants from 2006-09.
Frandsen, who has played all four infield positions in the majors and some outfield, also gives the Giants depth at the Triple-A level. The River Cats, incidentally, have compiled quite a lineup of former Giants. They’ll soon have Ishikawa, Frandsen, Hector Sanchez, John Bowker, Juan Perez, Casey McGehee and Brandon Hicks, among others.
▪ The lineup for today’s series finale against the Atlanta Braves:
And the Braves’ lineup against Bumgarner:
▪ Bochy said Matt Cain remains on track to make a start at extended spring training in Arizona on Wednesday. It will be Cain’s first time pitching in a game since spring training.
▪ The Giants need a win today to complete their most successful month of a season in 61 years – they’re 21-8, and the last time they had more wins in a month was June of 1954, when the New York Giants went 24-4.
▪ Buster Posey is 7 for 11 lifetime with two home runs against Braves right-hander Julio Teheran. Brandon Belt also has good numbers against the starter: 5 for 9 with a homer.
As for why Jonny Gomes is batting cleanup today for the Braves: In his career, the former A’s outfielder is 6 for 8 against Bumgarner with two homers.