HOUSTON -- Learning of famed astronaut Neil Armstrong's death last Saturday awakened an indelible memory for Gaylord Perry."As soon as I heard about that, I thought, 'We've got connections,'" Perry told MLB.com on Tuesday. Perry was referring to the events of July 20, 1969, when Apollo 11 landed on the moon and Armstrong became the first person to walk the lunar surface. That afternoon, Perry homered off Los Angeles left-hander Claude Osteen in the Giants' 7-3 victory at Candlestick Park. For those in the know, the feats were related. Five years earlier, then-Giants manager Alvin Dark teased Perry about his poor hitting by saying, "They'll put a man on the moon before he hits a home run." Perry said that he had forgotten about Dark's remark until after the game, when San Francisco Examiner reporter Harry Jupiter reminded him. "When he refreshed my memory, I knew exactly what he was talking about," Perry said. "It's a great conversation piece."
Humbled Mota returns after lengthy suspension
HOUSTON -- Guillermo Mota reciprocated the enthusiasm that Giants players displayed Tuesday as they welcomed him back to the active roster. But the right-hander's 100-game suspension left a sobering impression on him."I paid my price," said Mota, who received his penalty May 7 after testing positive for Clenbuterol, a banned substance that he said appeared in a trace amount in his daughter's prescription cough medicine. "What I did was a mistake, to not read the label, but that's in the past. What counts is from now on," said Mota, who will be permanently banned from baseball if he violates the Majors' substance-abuse policy again. Mota unsuccessfully appealed his suspension -- he said he was in Los Angeles for a hearing when Matt Cain threw his perfect game on June 13 -- though he said that baseball officials believed his story "100 percent." But, Mota said, "They have their rules, and a rule is a rule." Mota never doubted that the Giants would bring him back, though they were hounded by the specter of left fielder Melky Cabrera's 50-game suspension for testing positive for testosterone. And manager Bruce Bochy emphasized that Giants officials never considered making an example out of Mota by releasing him. "Everybody makes mistakes," Bochy said. "I do, you do, and unfortunately we all do. And when we do, there are consequences. He paid the consequences with a pretty good suspension." Bochy said that Mota adds depth to the bullpen, which has looked ragged at times recently. The 39-year-old likely will fill a variety of roles, though he primarily has been a long reliever since joining the club in 2010. A convenient combination of circumstances enabled the Giants to add Mota, 39. The club created roster room for him by placing Jeremy Affeldt on paternity leave, where he can be assigned for one to three days. Affeldt had planned to return to his permanent home in Spokane, Wash., where his wife, Larissa, is expected any day now to give birth to the couple's third son. Should Affeldt require the maximum amount of time off, the Giants would need to drop a player to accommodate his return for only one day, since active rosters can be expanded to 40 on Saturday.
Huff likely to return when rosters expand
HOUSTON -- Manager Bruce Bochy indicated that first baseman Aubrey Huff will be reinstated from the disabled list after rosters are expanded on Saturday.Bochy said that Huff, who has been working himself back into playing shape and performing baseball-related activities, will be used primarily as a pinch-hitter. Huff last appeared in a game for the Giants on June 10. He's hitting .155 for them with one home run and five RBIs in 32 games. Huff sprained his right knee on June 13 as he tried to scale the dugout railing to join the on-field celebration following Matt Cain's perfect game. He also has been bothered by patellar tendinitis in the same knee.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.