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Samardzija to ramp up activity this week

Blach eager to pitch home opener Tuesday vs. Mariners
MLB.com @sfgiantsbeat

LOS ANGELES -- Jeff Samardzija's physical condition has improved to the point where the Giants can establish a semblance of a timetable for his return to the starting rotation.

Recovering from a strained right pectoral muscle, Samardzija will throw bullpen sessions Tuesday and Friday, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Sunday. If Samardzija emerges from those stints feeling strong, he'll likely make at least one Minor League injury rehabilitation start before rejoining the Giants' rotation.

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LOS ANGELES -- Jeff Samardzija's physical condition has improved to the point where the Giants can establish a semblance of a timetable for his return to the starting rotation.

Recovering from a strained right pectoral muscle, Samardzija will throw bullpen sessions Tuesday and Friday, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Sunday. If Samardzija emerges from those stints feeling strong, he'll likely make at least one Minor League injury rehabilitation start before rejoining the Giants' rotation.

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Samardzija hasn't pitched competitively since March 21, when he left a Triple-A exhibition after 3 1/3 innings.

Blach's ready for Opening Day

Having experienced last Thursday's season opener at Dodger Stadium, Ty Blach will be an old pro at dealing with all the distractions that come with such an occasion when he starts the Giants' home opener Tuesday against the Seattle Mariners.

"I've got one game under my belt now, so those first-game jitters will be out of the way," Blach said. "It'll be the same routine, knowing there'll be a lot of pregame festivities and things like that. You understand the scheduling of the day and you try to base your routine off of that. Once the first pitch is thrown, it's game on, like any other game."

The primary difference, of course, is that Blach's next start will be at home.

"It'll be fun, getting back in front of our home crowd," said Blach, who pitched five shutout innings and received the winning decision in the season opener against the Dodgers. "It's always lively at AT&T."

Bochy batting: Never again

The sight of bench coach Hensley Meulens taking some playful hacks in the batting cage reminded Bochy of the last time he tried that stunt. The year was 1991, Bochy was 36 and he was managing the Padres' Class A Advanced High Desert farm club.

"I swung as hard as I've ever swung and I went straight down, ruptured a disk and they carried me off," Bochy recalled. "I said, 'I'll never do that again.' I was in bed for five weeks. That, or have surgery."

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.

San Francisco Giants, Ty Blach, Jeff Samardzija