Feeling the lingering effects of his strained shoulder, San Francisco Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval was not able to start last night’s pivotal game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Before the contest, Giants manager Bruce Bochy noted that Sandoval’s shoulder could require surgery following the season.
At this point, Sandoval’s shoulder is causing him so much discomfort when he swings right-handed, that he is unable to face lefty pitching. That was the case last night as the Dodgers started National League Cy Young contender Clayton Kershaw. LA is throwing another left-hander at the Giants this evening, meaning Sandoval will likely miss another start.
Sandoval did appear late in the game last night as a pinch hitter. Once Kershaw was lifted in the 8th for right-handed reliever Kenley Jansen, Bochy made the move and inserted Sandoval to hit for infielder Jeff Keppinger. After striking out, Sandoval remained in the game, covering the hot corner for San Francisco.
The timing is certainly not good for Sandoval and the Giants. The Panda has been ridiculous in September, posting a line of .357/.406/.821 with 12 extra base hits and 16 RBI’s this month.
Sandoval’s loss is exacerbated due to the fact that the Giants as a whole have struggled to score runs this season and currently find themselves fighting for a playoff berth.
Going forward, it’s uncertain if Sandoval’s shoulder will require surgery this offseason. San Francisco’s medical staff will have to evaluate if Sandoval can fully recover using rest and rehab, or if a procedure will be necessary to clean things up.
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