Giants notes: Ryder Jones the latest youngster to need season-ending surgery

Giants notes: Ryder Jones the latest youngster to need season-ending surgery

SAN FRANCISCO — Bruce Bochy has tried to mix and match veterans with rookies the past couple of weeks. He doesn’t wants to throw out a Triple-A lineup against teams that are competing for postseason spots. 

At some point, though, the Giants will turn it over to the youth for a game or two. Bochy said there’s a good chance he puts all the rookies together for games that don’t matter as much — think the two series against the Padres — but he also continues to lose options for young lineups. 

Steven Duggar had season-ending shoulder surgery last week and Ryder Jones will have season-ending knee surgery this week. Jones had an MRI on Monday that showed his dislocated left knee needs to be repaired. He was hurt taking a swing Sunday in Milwaukee. 

“He was excited about getting some playing time,” Bochy said. “It’s tough for these guys when this happens. This is a setback, but you’ve got to deal with it.”

Duggar had shown enough to go into next season as the opening day center fielder. Jones was hoping to show he’s a strong candidate for a bench spot, but he’ll now have to have a huge spring. The silver lining? Youth is still on his side. Jones, who hit two long homers in eight at-bats this season, won’t turn 25 until next summer. He still is a year younger than most of the rookies who have made an impact this season. 

--- Bochy had Chris Shaw on the bench Sunday but nearly gave him a start against a lefty on Monday. However, Sean Newcomb holds lefties to a .186 batting average. Shaw will be in the lineup Tuesday against hard-throwing righty Mike Foltynewicz. 

--- The Braves come in at 79-64 and atop the NL East. This was supposed to be another rebuilding year for them, but they found two young superstars in Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuna Jr. Albies, the 21-year-old second baseman, has 22 homers. Acuna, just 20, has 25 homers in 92 big league games. 

“When you play these guys you understand why they are where they are,” Bochy said of the Braves. “Especially with these two young kids.”

The Giants did sweep the Braves in Atlanta in May. That might have been the high point of the season. 

--- The Giants have lost eight straight. They haven’t lost nine straight since July 23-Aug. 1, 2006. 


Tyler Austin, Mike Yastrzemski positives in uninspiring Giants loss

Tyler Austin, Mike Yastrzemski positives in uninspiring Giants loss

LOS ANGELES -- Giants Bruce Bochy met with the media a couple of hours before Wednesday's 9-2 loss to the Dodgers, and when a reporter brought up Shaun Anderson's first-inning issues, the manager smiled and politely cut the question off. 

"His issues?" Bochy said. "The team's, but go ahead ..."

Yes, it is indeed the team. Bochy keeps hoping something will change, but his starting pitchers seem incapable of flipping that switch. The Giants were allowing a 1.058 OPS to opposing hitters in the first inning -- that would rank fourth in the Majors for an individual hitter -- even before Drew Pomeranz gave up three runs in a very loud opening frame on Wednesday. 

Pomeranz would be charged with seven runs and a whole lot more exit velocity in the loss, as the Giants failed to take advantage of forearm discomfort that knocked Dodgers starter Rich Hill out after just one inning. 

This was, in every respect, more of the same. So let's change it up. Here are three things you can feel good about after a game like that:

--- Tyler Austin hit his sixth homer and played solid defense. 

Austin took right-hander Yimi Garcia deep to right-center, hitting a home run that just kept carrying and carrying, catching outfielders Alex Verdugo and Cody Bellinger by surprise. The Giants don't hit a lot of homers like that. 

Austin had been in a 1-for-20 skid coming into the game, but he's slugging .447 and has started to look much more comfortable in left field. Perhaps he's someone who can be a useful piece for the future. 

The most important part of that will be his ability to play left field, and after a slow start because of elbow soreness and bad weather that kept him from doing outfield drills, Austin has looked much better. The last two games have been his two best defensively since coming over from Minnesota. 

"It's just working in practice. That's the big thing," Austin said of the change. "I feel like it's coming along and getting better every day. I'm starting to feel pretty good out there. Hopefully we can keep that going."

Bochy has always believed Austin -- a DH/1B type in the AL -- has a chance to play out there. 

"He's getting better and better out there," the manager said. "He can run, he's got range, there's no reason why he shouldn't be a good left fielder."

[RELATED: Giants sign 23 draft picks; still waiting on Bishop, others]

--- Speaking of left field, Mike Yastrzemski has been much better than the other former River Cats and minor leaguers the Giants have run through this season. Yaz was a last-minute replacement for Steven Duggar, who has a tight lower back, and hit a solo blast off lefty Caleb Ferguson in the sixth. 

Overall, Yastrzemski has a .250/.316/.426 slash line while playing good defense wherever Bochy puts him. It's early, but he looks capable of being part of the outfield mix next year. Like Austin, he should get plenty of starts in the second half as Farhan Zaidi and Co. try to evaluate what they really have. 

--- I could not get to a third positive thing. Sorry. Here is a video of me eating a hot dog with bologna on it and immediately regretting some life choices. 

Giants sign 23 MLB draft picks, but still waiting on top selections


Giants sign 23 MLB draft picks, but still waiting on top selections

LOS ANGELES -- The Giants announced on Wednesday that they have signed 23 MLB draft picks, although the list is missing the biggest names. 

First-round pick Hunter Bishop, selected 10th overall earlier this month, has not signed yet. Second-round pick Logan Wyatt and fourth-rounder Tyler Fitzgerald are still playing in the College World Series with Louisville and thus cannot sign. Fitzgerald hit a home run Wednesday as the Cardinals beat Auburn. Eighth-round pick Caleb Kilian also is still playing.

The highest selection to sign thus far is center fielder Grant McCray, a third-round pick who is the son of former big leaguer Rodney McCray. Grant was one of nine position players the Giants drafted on the first two days of the draft, something the franchise had not done in 50 years. 

[RELATED: How Ramos' elite numbers compare to current Giants stars]

Overall, the Giants have signed 15 of their first 20 selections. Trevor McDonald, an 11th-round pick out of high school, also remains unsigned. It's possible that is connected to the top picks -- the Giants might need a bit of excess slot money to lock up a high school arm. 

The Giants did not have any concerns at the time of the draft about their ability to sign Bishop, a star outfielder at Arizona State. They still don't anticipate any problems.