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1B Brandon Belt is expected to be activated off the disabled list Friday and immediately placed in the starting lineup for the Giants' trip opener in San Diego against the Padres. Belt, who broke his left thumb May 9, will bat second in the new Giants' lineup, behind RF Hunter Pence, San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy announced Thursday. Belt went 13-for-25 (.520) with three home runs and six RBIs in seven minor league games split between Class A San Jose and Triple-A Fresno.
2B Ehire Adrianza began a minor league rehab stint at Triple-A Fresno on Wednesday and went 1-for-2 while playing five innings at second base. Adrianza suffered a strained right hamstring June 22, opening the door for second base prospect 2B Joe Panik to make his major league debut. With Panik having taken over as the Giants' starting second baseman, Adrianza is no sure thing to return to the parent club upon completing his 15-day requirement on the disabled list.
2B Joe Panik was promoted to second in the Giants' batting order Thursday as part of manager Bruce Bochy's lineup shake-up. The rookie went hitless in three at-bats with a walk, but it was just considered a temporary move anyway. Bochy announced before the game that 1B Brandon Belt, who is expected to be activated off the disabled list in time for Friday's trip opener at San Diego, will be the club's No. 2 hitter going forward.
2B Marco Scutaro will start a minor league rehab stint at Triple-A Fresno on Sunday if all went well in his final appearance for the club's Arizona Summer League affiliate on Thursday night. Scutaro had two hits in an ASL game Wednesday, and Thursday was playing on a second consecutive day for the first time since suffering a back injury in spring training. Giants manager Bruce Bochy said the hope is to be able to activate Scutaro from the disabled list immediately following the All-Star break.
RHP Matt Cain has been a bit of a hard-luck pitcher this season, with just one win to show for a decent 4.38 ERA in 12 starts. Hard luck is nothing new to Cain, especially in San Diego, where he has won just four of 16 starts in his career despite a 2.29 ERA. In fact, Padres hitters have compiled just a .194 batting average against Cain in those games. The veteran is 7-13 overall with a 3.19 ERA in 33 career starts against the Padres.
RF Hunter Pence batted leadoff for the 34th time in his career Thursday in the Giants' 7-2 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals. It didn't go well. Pence did have one hit, a fifth-inning single, but didn't provide the spark Giants manager Bruce Bochy was looking for. Nonetheless, Pence, whose hit extended his hitting streak to eight games, will be slotted atop the Giants' lineup for the foreseeable future, Bochy announced.
LHP Madison Bumgarner couldn't overcome two bad breaks in a five-inning effort Thursday that matched his shortest since April 17. Bumgarner thought he was out of the first inning unscored upon when Giants LF Tyler Colvin apparently camped under St. Louis Cardinals SS Jhonny Peralta's high fly with two outs. But Colvin had lost the ball in the afternoon sky, and it sailed over the fence for a two-run homer. The Cardinals later added three runs in the fourth after 2B Mark Ellis had hit what appeared to be an inning-inning double play grounder. But Giants 1B Adam Duvall threw the ball away at second base, opening the door for a big inning.