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Lowell Cohn: Pablo Sandoval has pressing issue

  • San Francisco Giants' Pablo Sandoval during a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies on Saturday, April 12, 2014, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

SAN FRANCISCO — Tony Bennett didn't sing in China Basin on Saturday.

It's nice to hear Tony croon "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" after every Giants home win, a lovely tradition at AT&T Park, Tony with his raspy meticulous understated voice putting all that emotion into it.

No Tony for the Giants after the Rockies beat them 1-0.

The crisis moment of the game, the moment the Giants could have won, happened in the bottom of the eighth.

Pablo Sandoval came to the plate with the bases loaded and two outs against reliever Rex Brothers, who was having trouble locating the plate. His ball was darting to all the wrong places and this was the Giants' chance.

With two strikes, Sandoval lunged for a low outside changeup — clearly a ball — and swung an awkward swing and missed the ball and the Giants' opportunity vanished.

Right now, Sandoval's batting average is .152. When a man bats that low, that subterranean, he usually gets a one-way Greyhound ticket to Minor-Leagueville.

No one expects Sandoval to make a quick jaunt to Triple-A. But it's hard not to notice one thing.

This is his contract year.

He needs to do well, to show he's the real thing so he can earn the get-set-for-life contract ballplayers crave, the Barry Zito contract or something like that. Sandoval's lot is particularly thorny because of his weighty weight issues and because he's not fielding or hitting well.

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