SAN FRANCISCO -- Chase d'Arnaud thought he would be spending the next few days preparing for the Triple-A All-Star Game in Columbus, Ohio. Instead he'll be preparing to help the Giants off the bench.
D'Arnaud, a 31-year-old with big league experience for five other organizations, was called up Saturday morning to take Joe Panik's roster spot. Panik had an MRI on his strained groin in the morning and the Giants are waiting for a timetable of how long their second baseman will be out.
For now, Alen Hanson will get the majority of the starts at second, with d'Arnaud and possibly Austin Slater seeing time against left-handers. D'Arnaud wasn't too bummed about missing his All-Star assignment.
"I'll take this over that," he said. "My wife was stressing about taking Jagger, our one-year-old, on his first flight to Columbus. She was relieved."
The Giants cleared a 40-man spot by putting Hunter Strickland on the 60-day DL, clearing the way for d'Arnaud to take a job usually held by Kelby Tomlinson. The veteran was hitting .292 for the River Cats with 14 doubles and 12 homers. He can be used all over the infield and has played outfield for the River Cats, as well. Manager Bruce Bochy anticipates using d'Arnaud as a pinch-runner, too. He is one of the fastest players in the organization.
"He's got pretty good instincts and feel on the bases," Bochy said. "As you saw in spring training, he doesn't hesitate."
In another move, the Giants sent Chris Stratton to Triple-A to open a rotation spot for Jeff Samardzija, who had a long DL stint with a sore shoulder. Stratton is 8-6 but is coming off a rough stretch and has a 4.93 ERA. Bochy said he had a long talk with Stratton about some adjustments he can make in Triple-A.
"He's pitched some big games here for us, important games here that we felt we had to win," Bochy said. "He came through for us. He'll be back up here."