OAKLAND — Asked Friday afternoon to describe his latest symptoms, Jeff Samardzija smiled.
“It’s a little bit of dead arm, like if your older brother cold-cocked you in the arm,” he said.
Childhood disagreements don’t generally come with a big needle, though. Samardzija had a PRP injection over the break as the Giants continue to try and find a solution to shoulder problems that have put him on the disabled list for a third time. The Giants are listing their No. 5 starter as “TBA” for now, and manager Bruce Bochy said he hasn’t ruled Samardzija out, but the right-hander won’t throw a bullpen session until Sunday at the earliest, so it seems overly optimistic that he'll start next Wednesday.
Samardzija himself was optimistic while describing an ailment that once again flared up during his second start back from the DL. He said he is spending time with pitching coach Curt Young and the training staff and trying to find out what specific activities are leading to issues. He already has changed his work in the weight room and may adjust his throwing and batting practice routines.
“The silver lining is that it’s nothing new,” he said. “We’re dealing with the same thing as before and trying to avoid those flareups.”
Samardzija has a 6.25 ERA in 10 starts this season and the Giants don’t have many more to throw at him as they try to get him right. They're trying to stay in the race, after all. If that doesn’t happen this season, Samardzija said he’ll overhaul his offseason routine to try and avoid another year like this. Doctors have not recommended surgery to this point.
--- A day before Samardzija had an injection, Buster Posey had cortisone shot into his hip. Posey was in the lineup Friday as the catcher and said he felt good. He cautioned, though, that he won’t know if the injection worked until he gets out there for a few games. Posey played through hip discomfort for most of the first half and hit just five homers.
--- Evan Longoria started a rehab assignment with Triple-A Sacramento and could be activated as soon as Tuesday in Seattle. The Giants will face James Paxton that night, and could certainly use Longoria’s right-handed bat. Joe Panik (groin strain) could start his rehab assignment next week. He took batting practice on Friday.
--- Brandon Belt was placed on the paternity list and Ryder Jones was brought down from Sacramento for a spot start against righty Edwin Jackson. The Belts are expecting their second child this weekend. Bochy said Belt will be back and in the lineup on Saturday night.
--- Here are our latest Power Rankings, with updates on former Giants Cory Gearrin, George Kontos, Matt Duffy, Christian Arroyo and others.