The Sports Xchange

MLB Team Report - San Francisco Giants - INSIDE PITCH

SAN FRANCISCO -- Right-hander Matt Cain flew to Florida on Tuesday for a scheduled appointment with Dr. James Andrews on Wednesday, but Giants manager Bruce Bochy warned not to read too much into the visit.

Bochy said Cain will use Andrews as a second opinion on his ailing right elbow, then probably seek a third opinion before deciding whether surgery is the best course of action in his attempt to pitch pain-free again.

Cain hasn't started a game since July 9. He has been diagnosed as having bone chips in his elbow, an ailment that wouldn't necessarily require surgery.

The veteran is on the disabled list -- his third trip this season for three different problems -- and, according to Giants general manager Brian Sabean, is no sure-thing to pitch again this year. Sabean disclosed as much when he announced the acquisition of right-handed starter Jake Peavy last week.

Bochy said Cain, who is 2-7 this season with a 4.18 ERA, would rejoin the Giants in New York at the end of this week. It's possible that is where Cain will get his third opinion.


MLB Team Report - San Francisco Giants - NOTES, QUOTES

RECORD: 57-50

STREAK: Lost six

NEXT: Pirates (RHP Charlie Morton, 5-10, 3.65 ERA) at Giants (RHP Tim Lincecum, 9-7, 3.96 ERA)


--RHP Tim Lincecum has done his best pitching with C Hector Sanchez behind the plate. C Buster Posey's trustworthy backup, however, won't be available when Lincecum faces the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday. Giants manager Bruce Bochy indicated Monday that Sanchez's replacement, C Andrew Susac, would probably get the start Wednesday. But Bochy seemed to change his mind Tuesday, using Susac behind the plate and moving Posey to first base. No announcement was made on who would start Wednesday, an afternoon game in the wake of Tuesday's night affair. Lincecum is 2-4 in his career against the Pirates with a 4.86 ERA in eight starts.

--RHP Tim Hudson has lost six of his last seven decisions, but it's not because he's pitching poorly. Hudson allowed three or fewer runs for the fifth time in his last six starts in Tuesday's 3-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Hudson has a 1.77 ERA in his last three starts, a stretch during which he's gone just 1-2.

--RHP Matt Cain left the team Tuesday to fly to Florida for a scheduled appointment with Dr. James Andrews on Wednesday. Cain, who has been diagnosed with bone chips in his right elbow, is seeking a second opinion on the elbow. Giants manager Bruce Bochy indicated Cain might also seek a third opinion after rejoining the team in New York later this week. Cain is on the 15-day disabled list and hasn't pitched since July 9.

--C Andrew Susac made his first big-league start in Tuesday's 3-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. It was not memorable. Susac went 0-for-2 with a walk, grounding out with C/1B Buster Posey on second base in the fourth inning. Susac was scheduled to bat as the potential tying run with two outs and Posey again on base in the ninth inning, but Giants manager Bruce Bochy opted to pinch hit 1B Travis Ishikawa for him. Ishikawa struck out.

--1B Travis Ishikawa was promoted from Triple-A Fresno on Tuesday as the Giants look for some left-handed pop off the bench in the absence of switch-hitting C Hector Sanchez. Sure enough, Ishikawa got an opportunity to demonstrate his power in the ninth inning Tuesday, but struck out as the potential tying run in a 3-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Ishikawa had 11 home runs in 71 games at Fresno this season. He also gives manager Bruce Bochy a left-handed option as a starter at first base with 1B Brandon Belt still out of action while recovering from a concussion.

--OF Juan Perez benefitted Tuesday when Giants manager Bruce Bochy opted for a more balanced roster, adding an outfielder to the roster while eliminating a second baseman. Perez was demoted to Triple-A Fresno earlier this month, but hit well enough in the minors (.333 average) to earn another shot at the big leagues. Adding Perez and subtracting 2B Tony Abreu gave the Giants two backup outfielders and three reserve infielders for Tuesday's game.