Notes: Bochy ready for Bonds' arrival
Giants' new manager well aware of expected media attention
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Spring's idyllic calm will be shattered Tuesday, when left fielder Barry Bonds is expected to address an anticipated media throng after the Giants' first full-squad workout.Giants players and officials have grown accustomed to the attention Bonds brings with his pursuit of Hank Aaron's home-run record and the controversy surrounding his off-the-field issues. Bruce Bochy, the Giants' new manager, sounded as if he already shares the organizational attitude toward Bonds. The media attention Bonds will draw, Bochy said Sunday, is "well-deserved. He's one of the greatest players ever." Bonds has pronounced himself leaner and in decent physical condition, arousing curiosity about how he'll look when he arrives. Said Bochy: "You're talking to a guy who's seen him on the other side. Seeing him on my side -- any time you have the cleanup hitter healthy and feeling good, that's a good thing." Bochy is aware of Bonds' prowess more than most managers. Bonds' 85 homers against the San Diego Padres, whom Bochy managed for the last 12 seasons, are the slugger's most against any club. The longest homer Bochy claims to have seen was a 2002 drive Bonds crushed off Dennis Tankersley that hit the Qualcomm Stadium scoreboard. "Two pitchers high-fived Tankersley when he came in," Bochy recalled, prompting laughter. Moving from quaint memories to the present, Bochy insisted that he's ready to deal with Bonds. He said that they spoke in person twice during the offseason, once in San Francisco and on another occasion in San Diego.
"We've had good talks and I look forward to having him here," Bochy said.Bochy indicated that he'll give Bonds special treatment -- not to curry favor with him, but to preserve his 42-year-old body and balky knees. "I think you need to be a little different with each guy," Bochy said. "Running your workouts, you have to adjust with your guys. Fact of the matter is, some guys aren't able to do what others can. Some guys have earned some things." Drawing a crowd: Pitching prospect Tim Lincecum attracted more than just the typical group of onlookers when he strode to a practice mound for his every-other-day throwing session.
As expected, Bochy and pitching coach Dave Righetti were present. So were general manager Brian Sabean and special advisor Tony Siegle. But instead of heading for an early shower, Giants pitchers Barry Zito, Noah Lowry and Brad Hennessey grabbed chairs and sat just scant feet away, grinning with anticipation.Firing a succession of low fastballs, Lincecum -- the Giants' first pick in the 2006 First-Year Player Draft -- didn't disappoint the spectators. "He's got a real powerful delivery," Zito said. "He generates a lot out of that frame of his."
Asked if Lincecum reminded him of anyone, Zito cited a former Oakland teammate.
"People were saying Tim Hudson, but only because he's under 6 feet and throws hard. As far as his delivery goes, I think it's fairly unique, the way he has the ball behind his right pocket."Lincecum remained unfazed by the extra eyeballs trained upon him.
"I was aware of it," he said. "But I wasn't trying to pay attention to it. I was working on stuff I needed to work on."In what could have been a significant pairing, Lincecum threw to Bengie Molina, the starting catcher who has worked almost exclusively with the Giants' front-line hurlers. After Lincecum finished throwing, Molina counseled him for nearly two minutes about the pitfalls of trying to be too fine with his curveball and changeup.
"Just keep it down and don't worry about corners," Lincecum said, relating Molina's message.Briefly: Although Zito wasn't scheduled to throw, he honed his mechanics by pantomiming his windup with 20 to 25 simulated pitches -- an exercise many pitchers favor. ... Non-roster left-hander Damian Moss left camp to attend to a personal matter. ... Bochy has been relentlessly upbeat about the pitchers in camp: "They all look good. It's evident they came into camp in shape. We've had no setbacks. They're all throwing well. I can't say there's one person in particular who's standing out."
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.