Pablo Sandoval is going to have surgery on his wrist this Tuesday and will miss the next four-to-six weeks, Bruce Bochy told reporters on Saturday.
Yes, it's a tough blow. And yes, it comes at a terrible time: the Giants are slumping pretty heavily on offense right now, and losing Panda, who was having a great season, isn't great news.
"It's a tough blow for us," Bochy said. "I feel for Pablo. We've talked many times about how hard he worked in the off season to get in the condition he's in, plus the way he is playing."
The injury, which is technically a "hamate fracture," which means that Sandoval would have tried to eat his wrist if he'd been told that a year ago.
Now, it's just a crippling blow on the offensive and defensive end. Panda was smoking the ball to the tune of a .313 average and getting on base at a .374 clip at the time of the injury, and because Mark DeRosa's already on the disabled list, Miguel Tejada will likely take his reps at third base, with Mike Fontenot shifting over to third base.
Most Giants fans will cry for a trade of some sorts, but don't bank on that happening: Ryan Rohlinger's getting called up to play third as well, so it's highly unlikely that San Fran makes a play for someone outside the organization.
Brandon Belt's a possible call-up soon, as well, if only because the team needs to add some pop in the lineup with Sandoval out.
The good news is that it's April, which means Panda can get back to the lineup in time to make sure the team doesn't lose too much ground.
The bad news is it's a wrist injury, which means he could stall out a little even when he returns, and almost certainly will be sapped of his power for at least part of the season after coming back from the disabled list.
If you want to point to one player on the team who needs to get hot quickly, it's gotta be Buster Posey.
The reigning Rookie of the Year hasn't been hitting the ball too well as of late, but he's the one consistent guy on the roster who can really make a difference -- his call-up last season sparked the offense, and they need him to do it again, only with the negative addition of boosted expectations.