video thumbnail

SF@CIN: Sandoval extends his hit streak to 19 games

Padres left-hander Cory Luebke was nearly unhittable his last time out, allowing just two singles over eight shutout innings to outduel Roy Halladay for his second straight win.

When he toes the rubber for Friday's series opener with the Giants, however, he'll be facing someone in Pablo Sandoval who hasn't been held without a hit in any game this season. Sandoval set the Giants' franchise record Thursday by extending his hitting streak to 19 games, the longest to open a season by a Giants player.

Luebke has a streak of his own going, though, having not allowed a run over the last 13 1/3 innings. Luebke's eight shutout innings opposite Halladay marked the longest outing of the 27-year-old's career and turned the heads of a couple of his teammates earlier this week.

"I hate to say it because it's so early in his career, but that's a big game," Chase Headley said of Luebke after what was just the 24th career start for the southpaw. "It's not a playoff game, but we needed a really good pitching performance going up against that guy."

On Friday, "that guy" becomes Sandoval, who is hitting .321 and has played every inning at third base for the Giants this season. In Thursday's 6-5 comeback victory, he broke Johnny Rucker's 67-year-old record of hitting safely in 18 straight games to start a season.

"Pablo has played with a lot of energy and not showing any signs [of being tired]," manager Bruce Bochy said prior to Sandoval extending his hitting streak Thursday. "Pablo has looked great."

Padres: Owings places on DL

 The Padres placed reliever Micah Owings on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right forearm on Thursday and selected reliever Dale Thayer from Triple-A Tucson.

The Padres hoped rest would help Owings, and he didn't throw for six days before he pitched Wednesday, allowing a run in 1 2/3 innings in the 7-2 loss to the Nationals. But, Owings again experienced discomfort.

• Left fielder/first baseman Jesus Guzman was out of the starting lineup for a third consecutive game Thursday after he had two teeth removed on Monday. He had a pinch-hit single in Wednesday's game.

Giants: Hacker in line for first career start
With the Giants in need of a starter after a doubleheader, right-hander Eric Hacker is the guy. The Giants selected his contract from Triple-A Fresno and transferred closer Brian Wilson from the 15-day to the 60-day disabled list.

Hacker's agent, Matt Sosnick, announced Wednesday night on Twitter that the Giants would be purchasing the contract of his client to fill that spot in the rotation. Bochy would not confirm that report as of Thursday afternoon, but the team made the move official on Friday.

Hacker, 29, is 4-0 this season for Fresno with a 2.19 ERA in 24 2/3 innings pitched. Opponents have hit just .217 against the right-hander.

Worth noting

 • Sandoval posted a career-best 22-game hitting streak from June 19-July 14 last season. The longest in Giants' franchise history is 26 games, set by Jack Clark in the 1978 campaign.

• Since 2003, the Padres lead the head-to-head series by just one game, posting an 83-82 record against the Giants during that span.

• With a sixth-inning triple in Thursday's game, Padres second baseman Orlando Hudson extended his hitting streak to nine games. Hudson, hitting .097 before the streak, has raised his average to .206. Comments