SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Matt Cain surely would be happy to take the command he had Friday into opening day April1 against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Making his fifth spring training appearance and his fourth start, Cain pitched five shutout innings and gave up just two hits as the Giants beat the Texas Rangers, 5-2.
Only three men reached base against Cain, and catcher Buster Posey gunned down two of them attempting to steal, including Elvis Andrus in the first inning. Beyond that, Cain required little assistance in what was easily his best spring outing.
"I felt confident throwing anything I wanted, and I was able to get ahead," Cain said. "I felt good in the bullpen, got in a good rhythm, started thinking about hitting spots and carried that in the game. Buster and I were working on some good stuff, and he made some pretty ridiculous throws to second against some guys who can run."
Posey confirmed that Cain was almost on autopilot with his pitches.
"He was really commanding the fastball well, and he just mixed in the other three pitches," Posey said. "With everything, he threw the ball where he wanted to."
As opening day draws closer, Cain said he hasn't spent a lot of thought about going up against the Dodgers and most likely Clayton Kershaw.
"I'm just trying to take it as another start," Cain said. "I know there's going to be a whole lot going on. But in my mind, I'm just thinking about getting my work done here and feeling good going into the season."
Hunter Pence was the offensive star for the Giants, drilling his first spring home run, a two-run shot, over the left field wall in the fourth inning. He added an RBI double in the sixth. Andres Torres delivered the other runs with a two-run homer in the seventh.
Sergio Romo pitched one inning and got two quick outs before surrendering back-to-back hits, including a run-scoring double.
-- The Giants trimmed 21 players. Among the players reassigned to the minor league camp were right-handed pitchers Brett Bochy, Boof Bonser and Heath Hembree, infielder Brock Bond and promising outfielder Gary Brown.
Optioned to Triple-A Fresno was right-hander Dan Otero, who spent some time with the big club last season.
The Giants have 38 players remaining in camp.
-- Manager Bruce Bochy said he spared his son Brett being called into his office to be notified of his reassignment. He told him at dinner Thursday night.
The manager said he enjoyed having his son in camp.
"You spend so much time away from your kids when you're in baseball, here he was every day, I got a chance to watch him pitch and go through drills," he said. "He's worked hard to get to this point, so I was very proud of him."
-- The Giants have shut down backup catcher Hector Sanchez until Tuesday because of a flare-up of shoulder pain that has troubled him much of the spring. If rest resolves the issue, Bochy said Sanchez would try to make up at-bats at the team's minor league camp.
Bochy wasn't optimistic about utility infielder Tony Abreu, who has been troubled by a sore knee and is out of options.
"He's coming along slow," Bochy said. "It's one of the things he just can't turn the corner on, so we're going to shut him down for a few days."
Bochy was more optimistic about Jose Mijares, who has been out for much of the spring with elbow soreness. The left-handed reliever has been throwing off flat ground and will throw off a mound Saturday, with the goal of possibly throwing to hitters next week.
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