San Francisco Giants

Giants’ Cain scratched from start with cut finger

SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants right-hander Matt Cain was scratched from his start tonight after cutting his right index finger, the team just announced. Cain will not require stitches and Yusmeiro Petit will start for the Giants instead against the San Diego Padres.

Manager Bruce Bochy said Cain cut the finger when he was holding a kitchen knife and it started to slip out of his hand. Cain tried to catch it and cut himself, Bochy said.

Bochy said the cut is small -- about a half-inch -- but in a bad spot on the forefinger. He said it’s unlikely Cain will miss more than one start -- the Giants think the cut will close by itself within a couple of days.

That’s still a tough way to end April for Cain, who is still looking for his first win of the year at 0-3 despite two starts in which he pitched seven innings and allowed one or no earned runs. All seemed normal with Cain in the clubhouse this afternoon but he left the field early during batting practice.

It will be the first start of the season for Petit, who last pitched April 21 in Colorado. He threw four innings in relief that day and allowed two runs on four hits with six strikeouts. Petit is 1-1 with a 3.68 ERA on the season in 14 2/3 innings.

The Giants are also going with a Brandon Belt-less lineup tonight, as the struggling first baseman is getting a night off against Padres left-hander Eric Stults. Pablo Sandoval, also struggling at the plate, is in the lineup, though manager Bruce Bochy said there’s a "good chance" that Sandoval will not start the season finale Wednesday.

Sandoval has very good lifetime numbers against Stults: 12-for-24 with three doubles and a triple. Here’s the full Giants lineup:

CF Pagan

RF Pence

1B Posey

LF Morse

3B Sandoval

C Sanchez

SS Crawford

2B Hicks

P Petit

And the Padres’ lineup behind Stults:

SS Cabrera

CF Maybin

LF Denorfia

1B Grandal

RF Venable

C Hundley

2B Amarista

3B Peterson

P Stults

* It’s not a bad time to have Morse in the cleanup spot. The left fielders is 8 fo rhis last 20 with there home runs and eight RBIs in his past six games.

* Following last night’s successful challenge of a safe-out call at first base, Bochy is now 4-for-5 in challenges on the season -- a pretty impressive rate considering how unfamiliar the system was this spring and how early on it seemed crews might hesitate to overturn any call that wasn’t blatantly wrong.

Bochy said Monday night’s challenge -- Xavier Nady was ruled to have beaten out a play at first, but was then ruled out -- was "a tough call." Early replays weren’t conclusive, so Bochy had to make the call to challenge himself. He said he was partly influenced by the fact that Madison Bumgarner was laboring in the third inning -- the overturned call was the final out of the third.

* Stults’ best start this season came against the Giants on April 19, when he held them to one run on three hits in six innings. One thing the Giants want to do is stay away from the double play -- they hit into three Monday night, giving them 24 for the year, third-most in the National League.