LF Austin Slater went 1-for-4 on Saturday to extend his hitting streak to seven games, going 14-for-27 (.519) in that stretch. In his first 12 games in the majors, Slater is hitting .386 (17-for-44) with one double, one triple, one homer and eight RBIs. He has a .449 on-base percentage and a .523 slugging percentage.
RHP Hunter Strickland is still awaiting word after appealing Tuesday to have his six-game suspension reduced. “I don’t even check anymore,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “He’s on the roster. He’s ready to pitch.” Strickland was suspended for hitting Washington’s Bryce Harper in the hip with a pitch on May 29, resulting in an incident where Harper charged the mound and exchanged punches with Strickland.
1B Brandon Belt was given a day off Saturday but pinch hit in the sixth inning agianst left-hander Kyle Freeland and struck out with runners at first and second to end the inning. Belt is 0-for-18 and has two hits in his past 29 at-bats. Belt does not have a hit in his past 23 at-bats against left-handed pitches. With Freeland starting, manager Bruce Bochy opted to leave Belt, whose average has dipped to .220. “Belt is going through his struggles,” Bochy said before the game. “I want to give him a break, more on the mental side.”
INF Eduardo Nunez (left hamstring) likely won’t return to the lineup before Monday at Atlanta and is available for emergency duty. He left Thursday’s game in the seventh inning with hamstring soreness after running out an infield single.
1B Buster Posey (left ankle) was cleared to catch and will do so Sunday but returned to the lineup at first base. He went 1-for-4 on Saturday. Posey has recovered from left ankle soreness, which occurred as he took a swing and homered Thursday night. Posey made a pinch-hitting appearance Friday, drew a four-pitch walk and was removed for a pinch-runner.
LHP Madison Bumgarner (bruised ribs, left shoulder AC sprain) threw about 40 pitches Saturday to hitters at the Giants’ complex in Scottsdale, Ariz. Manager Bruce Bochy said, “It went well. That’s all I can tell you. He’ll wait a couple days and do that again.” It was the first time Bumgardner faced hitters since he was injured riding a dirt bike April 20 on an off day for the Giants in Denver. Bumgarner could be ready to begin a minor league rehab assignment next week. That assignment is expected to last 30 days, the time alloted to pitchers on rehab assignments, with Bumgarner not expected to return to the Giants’