Day after brawl, Morse placed on concussion DL by Giants

Day after brawl, Morse placed on concussion DL by Giants

SAN FRANCISCO -- It turns out the Hunter Strickland-Bryce Harper fight did leave a player injured, but it wasn't one of the two main participants. 

Michael Morse was put on the concussion disabled list a few minutes before Tuesday's game and the Giants recalled Kelby Tomlinson to take the open roster spot. Morse and Jeff Samardzija collided in the middle of the pile Monday after Strickland and Harper exchanged punches. Both players went down hard. 

"That’s the unfortunate thing about these brawls you have," manager Bruce Bochy said. "Guys are running in and trying to break it up and here he gets hurt trying to break things up, so he’s down for a while ... When you see those two collide, he got caught in the side of the face and jaw area. That's a big man that hit him. I'm not surprised. When you watch that collision it was pretty violent. We were worried about him yesterday."

Approached by reporters after Monday's game, Morse said he was fine, and he said the incident was no big deal. Bochy said Morse did not want a concussion test Monday, but after batting practice on Tuesday it was clear he needed to see team doctors. He was given a concussion test and did not pass. Bochy said the team is hopeful Morse can return in seven days, but "it's wait and see."

"He's not feeling very well right now," Bochy said.

Morse actually took two hits. After he went down, he appeared to get hit by another player's knee. There was one camera angle that showed Morse at the bottom of the pile, not moving very much, but Bochy said the Giants believe the injury occured when Samardzija hit him. Before Tuesday's game, Harper said he was glad his former teammate got in the way. 

"Samardzija saw blood a little bit, I thought," Harper said. "I'm very thankful for Mikey Mo. That's a big spot with him coming in there."

Samardzija said the incident was "unfortunate."

"He's a big piece of the team and brings a lot of energy," he said. "It's tough to lose him. That's the way it goes."


Bumgarner leaves start after line drive hits pitching hand


Bumgarner leaves start after line drive hits pitching hand

A day after the Giants got good news about their No. 3 starter, their No. 1 left the game with an injury. 

Madison Bumgarner left Friday's spring training game against the Kansas City Royals in the third inning after a Whit Merrifield line drive hit his pitching hand. Bumgarner, who's scheduled to start Opening Day against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Mar. 29, was making his final start before the regular season.

He was off to a strong start this spring. In five appearances, Bumgarner posted a 2.84 ERA and 0.95 WHIP in 19.0 innings pitched. 

The 28-year-old missed nearly three months last season after injuring his left shoulder in a dirtbike accident.

This story is being updated. 

Jeff Samardzija to miss start of season after MRI reveals strained pectoral muscle


Jeff Samardzija to miss start of season after MRI reveals strained pectoral muscle

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants nearly left Scottsdale unscathed. Instead they'll leave with an injured No. 3 starter, but the news on Jeff Samardzija late Thursday night was good news. 

Manager Bruce Bochy told reporters that Samardzija has a strained pectoral muscle that will sideline him for the start of the season. But given that Samardzija, who has had a rough spring, went for an MRI on his shoulder a week before the season opener, team officials have to be breathing a sigh of relief. 

"He'll go a week without throwing the ball and then crank it back up," Bochy told reporters, including Kerry Crowley of the San Jose Mercury News. "It should't take long to get him back on the mound so it's good news."

Samardzija was supposed to take the ball next Saturday at Dodger Stadium. Instead, the Giants will rely on two young pitchers and a non-roster invitee at the back end of their rotation. The injury ends a three-way race for the final two spots between Chris Stratton, Ty Blach and Derek Holland. The Giants could use all three in the rotation until Samardzija is healthy, or they could skip their No. 5 starter and move one of the pitchers into the bullpen. 

Because the Giants have two off days before their seventh game, Madison Bumgarner can line up to pitch three of the first nine games. The Giants have been considering that all spring, although they have yet to publicly announce a decision one way or the other. Bumgarner said early in camp that he would be up to the challenge, and given how sharp he was all spring, that might be the best way to tread water until Samardzija is cleared to return to the rotation.