CINCINNATI -- Hunter Strickland insisted that he will channel his emotions in a more mature manner after his temper caused him to miss approximately two months of the season.The Giants activated Strickland from the 60-day disabled list on Saturday. Strickland, 29, fractured his right pinkie finger while punching a door
CINCINNATI -- Hunter Strickland insisted that he will channel his emotions in a more mature manner after his temper caused him to miss approximately two months of the season.
The Giants activated Strickland from the 60-day disabled list on Saturday. Strickland, 29, fractured his right pinkie finger while punching a door in frustration after blowing a save opportunity on June 18 against Miami. Pablo Sandoval was transferred to the 60-day DL to make room for Strickland on the 40-man roster.
During Strickland's absence, left-hander Will Smith settled into the closer's role for the Giants, converting 10 of 12 save chances.
"Remarkable," Strickland said of Smith. "Missing a whole year last year, and coming back and pitching the way he is has been a huge help for the team."
Meanwhile, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said that he won't hesitate to use Strickland in high-leverage situations immediately, and Strickland said he's ready for the challenge.
"Whenever the team needs me, whenever he calls my name, I'll be ready to go," said Strickland, who owns a 2.84 ERA, 13 saves and a .218 opponents' batting average in 34 appearances this season.
Asked what he learned from this experience, Strickland replied, "Don't ever hit anything. Just try to take the personal emotions for what they are. Obviously, reacting like that has its consequences. This is one I definitely will not repeat."
Rodriguez could return by end of next week
Despite his strained right hamstring, Dereck Rodriguez said that he felt good enough to make what had been his scheduled start on Friday night, when the Giants fell to the Reds, 2-1.
"If I were in the American League, I probably could have pitched," said Rodriguez, who injured himself while trying to separate combatants during Tuesday's Giants-Dodgers confrontation.
Bochy said starting him on regular rest would be "too risky," pointing out that Rodriguez would have to defend his position, cover first base and engage in other movements that would test his hamstring.
However, it's entirely possible that Rodriguez, who has established himself as a National League Rookie of the Year Award candidate, could pitch when he's eligible to return from the disabled list next Thursday or shortly afterward.
"I'll be good by then," Rodriguez vowed.
Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.