PHOENIX — The San Francisco Giants extended their best month in exactly two years with a victory at Arizona on Friday Ryan Jensen Color Rush Jersey , given a huge boost by rookie outfielder Austin Slater and left-hander Andrew Suarez.
At 17-10, the Giants are having their first winning month since June 2016, and with a victory in the second game of the three-game series Saturday, they will have one more victory than they had that June.
Slater had three hits, including two RBI doubles, in a Giants 2-1 victory on Friday, his sixth day back on his fourth recall from Triple-A Sacramento this season. Suarez gave up one run in six innings and ran his streak to 13 starts without walking more than two.
“He really has that composure out there,” San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said of Suarez. “He’s got some savvy out there. He knows when to make his pitches. He knows when to be careful, too.”
The Diamondbacks will send right-hander Shelby Miller (0-1, 12.27 ERA) to the mound Saturday for his second start since returning from Tommy John surgery in an attempt so salvage another series win.
The D-backs are 5-0-1 in their last six series since losing two of three at San Francisco from June 4-6. Giants rookie right-hander Dereck Rodriguez (2-1, 3.82) will make his sixth start of the season on Saturday. Rodriguez has never faced Arizona, but he allowed just one run and four hits over seven innings in his most recent start, on Sunday against San Diego. He did not get a decision but the Giants won the game 3-2.
Miller, who underwent Tommy John surgery last May, made his first start of the season in Miami on Monday, when he gave up six hits and five runs in 3 2/3 innings while reaching 95-96 mph on the radar gun.
“The fastball command was outstanding,” Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said. “I know he is working on his secondary stuff. That’s to be expected. Knowing that he has taken a 15-month journey to get to this point, it’s not going to be a perfect science right away. The secondary pitches are feel pitches, and I know that he is working hard. Landing the second stuff is something that we are hoping to see. We know we see it in bullpens and at different tunes. I know that Shelby is going to be ready for that challenge.”
Miller, the key return in the trade that sent Ender Inciarte and Dansby Swanson to Atlanta at the 2015 winter meetings Jack Mewhort Jersey , used words of encouragement from Patrick Corbin and the Arizona training staff to get through rehab. Corbin underwent Tommy John in the spring of 2014 season and missed the whole year.
“I talked to Corbin a lot,” Miller said. “The guys in the training room, day in and day out they were giving me reassurance. What to expect. I leaned on them and relied on them a lot. They were big. I am definitely feeling good.”
Miller admitted to feeling some nerves before the Miami start.
“For sure,” he said. “It is different than any other game. It is a big day. I had some minor league rehab starts, but those don’t even compare to the games that are mattering up here. I definitely had some jitters.”
Miller is 2-5 with a 3.51 ERA in nine career starts against the Giants.
Slater has been tearing up the Pacific Coast League in his time between stints in San Francisco. He is slashing .344/.417/.564 with 24 doubles and five homers in 53 games with the River Cats. His 24 doubles were second in the league, and his batting average was sixth when was promoted again last Saturday.
With third baseman Evan Longoria expected to miss at least another month, manager Bruce Bochy mentioned the possibility of giving Slater more time, especially against left-handed pitchers.
Slater is hitting at least .300 against righties and lefties in Sacramento this season, and during his short stay wth the Giants before a leg injury in 2017 hit .333 in 38 plate appearances against lefties.
“We’re missing a right-handed bat, and he could provide that,” Bochy said. “Not that other guys can’t, but you look at what he did tonight and what he’s been doing. He’s going to help stretch out this lineup and us some added offense, which we need against lefties.”
Even with veterans in the outfield, “You have to go with the guys who are swinging the bat well,” Bochy said. “They dictate their lineup.”
Slater has made three starts since being recalled the most recent time Saturday.
“The first couple of times up and down, it is easy to lose focus,” Slater said. “But for me it was try to prove a point that it wasn’t a fluke, that I was here to stay.”
The Oakland Raiders released pass rusher Aldon Smith after his latest run-in with the law.
The Raiders retained Smith’s contractual rights even as he spent the past two seasons on the NFL’s suspended list. But the team decided finally to cut ties one day after San Francisco police said authorities were searching for Smith in connection with a domestic violence allegation.
San Francisco police said an arrest warrant has been obtained for Smith stemming from allegations that Smith assaulted a woman on Saturday night. Smith left before police arrived to respond to the 911 call and authorities are working with Smith’s attorney to arrange a time for him to surrender.
Smith is facing misdemeanor charges of willful infliction of corporal injury, assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury, false imprisonment and vandalism Pat McAfee Jersey , according to Sgt. Michael Andraychak.
NEW YORK (AP) – Veteran play-by-play announcer Verne Lundquist will not be calling NCAA Tournament basketball games this year.
CBS and Turner Sports announced the commentator teams Monday for the men’s basketball tournament, which starts next week. Jim Nantz, Bill Raftery and Grant Hill will continue to announce the Final Four and championship game. Those games, along with the tournament selection show on Sunday, will be televised on TBS.
Lundquist, 77, has been calling tournament games for CBS since 1998. He stopped calling the Southeastern Conference football game of the week on CBS after the 2016 season, but still did the NCAA Tournament and Masters golf in 2017.
CBS spokeswoman Jennifer Sabatelle said Lundquist had back surgery last fall and decided to step away from doing this year’s tournament.
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Middleweight boxer Canelo Alvarez has tested positive for a banned drug, and his promoters blame contaminated meat.
A voluntary test showed Alvarez had traces of clenbuterol. A statement from Golden Boy Promotions said the amount was consistent with meat contamination that has impacted athletes in Mexico and China.
Daniel Eichner, director of the World Anti-Doping Agency-accredited laboratory that conducted the test, wrote: ”These values are all within the range of what is expected from meat contamination.”
Alvarez is scheduled for a rematch with middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin on May 5 in Las Vegas, a highly anticipated fight after their draw last year.
JUPITER, Fla. (AP) – Shortstop Paul DeJong and the St. Louis Cardinals agreed to a $26 million, six-year contract, a deal that includes team options for 2024 and 2025.
The 24-year-old made his major league debut last May 28 and hit .285 with a team-high 25 homers and 65 RBIs in 108 games. He was selected by St. Louis from Illinois St. in the fourth round of the 2015 amateur draft.
DeJong is 3 for 14 with a double and two RBIs in spring training this year.
His deal covers up to four years of arbitration eligibility and one-to-three years of free agent eligibility.
LONDON (AP) – The head of the English Football Association has apologized for ”any offense” caused after equating the Star of David with the swastika while discussing religious and political symbols that should be prohibited in the game.
FA CEO Martin Glenn said those symbols are ”the things we don’t want” being displayed by teams. Britain’s Jewish Leadership Council called Glenn’s comments ”offensive and inappropriate.”
Glenn says he will speak to the JLC and soccer anti-discrimination group Kick It Out to apologize.
In a statement, Glenn says ”I would like to apologize for any offense caused by the examples I gave when referring to political and religious symbols in football, specifically in reference to the Star of David, which is a hugely important symbol to Jewish people all over the world.”