Countdown (maybe) to Thursday’s first game
WASHINGTON — Regarding Thursday’s scheduled Giants-Washington Nationals doubleheader, the prevailing sense was that the teams would manage to play one game, thus giving Randy Johnson the opportunity to secure his 300th career victory.
But don’t even think about a second game, the experts believe.
Right now, you can forget about Game 1 starting on time. It’s about 30 minutes before the scheduled 4:35 p.m. first pitch, and it just began raining harder. Meteorologist — er, manager — Bruce Bochy told reporters during his daily pregame briefing that more storms were expected but that enough clear weather to play a game would follow.
Johnson appeared briefly in the Giants clubhouse in the pregame hours when reporters were allowed in. He glanced at a nearby television monitor when ESPN aired a report on the six-game suspension Yankees right-hander A.J. Burnett received. After a short while Johnson strode away, iPod headphones planted firmly in his ears.
One Giant position player I talked to expressed concern about whether Johnson would get his shot at No. 300 tonight. This indicated that while the Giants aren’t obsessing over The Big Unit’s impending milestone, it’s definitely in the backs of their minds.
Some non-Johnson stuff: Right-hander Joe Martinez, he of the healed skull, continued his recovery by throwing in the bullpen before showers began falling. The Giants remain pleased with Martinez’s progress. “There’s nothing wrong with his arm,” Bochy said. “He’s going to be fine.”
– Chris Haft