ATL@SF: Colvin sends two-run triple to right field

SAN FRANCISCO -- As a former first-round Draft pick of the Chicago Cubs who's now on his third Major League team in six seasons, Giants outfielder Tyler Colvin has learned some valuable lessons on his up-and-down baseball journey.

One of the most important lessons, he said, is to avoid putting too much pressure on himself, whether he's sizzling at the plate or struggling.

"I've done that before and I know how that turns out," Colvin said before the Giants' game Saturday night against Miami. "Just keep having consistent at-bats and try not to worry about the outcome as much as you can. Just worry about hitting balls hard and whatever happens, happens."

Colvin has gotten off to a ridiculously hot start with the Giants since being called up May 10 from Triple-A Fresno after first baseman Brandon Belt went on the disabled list with a broken left thumb. He entered Saturday batting .412 (7-for-17) with four doubles, one triple, one home run and three RBIs. He had a slugging percentage of .941 and an on-base percentage of .444.

In his first start as a Giant, Colvin went 2-for-3 with a home run, a triple and three RBIs in a 4-2 victory against Atlanta on Monday at AT&T Park.

Colvin, who was out of the lineup Saturday after making three straight starts, said he welcomed the opportunity to get consistent playing time.

"It's a great opportunity," he said. "It's unfortunate that Belt went down like he did, but it does give me somewhat of an opportunity to play. As long as you perform, you'll be in there. Just to be able to have that opportunity is great."

Colvin batted .254 with 20 home runs and 56 RBIs in 135 games in 2010 for the Cubs. The next year he hit .150 with six home runs and 20 RBIs in 80 games and was traded after the season to Colorado. In 2012, he batted .290 with 18 home runs and 72 RBIs for Colorado. The next year he batted .160 with three home runs and 10 RBIs in just 27 games for the Rockies.

"You have a great year and the next year you don't even make the team out of camp," said Colvin, who signed with San Francisco as a free agent on Feb. 23. "It's a funny sport. It's a tricky business sometimes and you learn it is a business. It's still a game but there's definitely a business side to it.

"It's all a learning experience. Everyone's path is different. Mine's been up and down so far. Hopefully when I get it back up like I am now, I'll just keep it there."

Hudson feels on track to make next start

SF@LAD: Hudson goes six strong, allows just two runs

SAN FRANCISCO -- Right-hander Tim Hudson made around 35 throws from 70 to 80 feet Saturday as he continued to make good progress in his recovery from a strained left hip.

Hudson missed his scheduled start Friday but expects to be ready to pitch Thursday at Colorado.

"Just taking steps," Hudson said before the Giants' game against Miami on Saturday. "Everything's doing what we expect it to do. Keep going the way we are, I should be fine for Thursday.

"It's just more tight than anything. With treatment, stretching, massage, it should be good. It should be fine by next week. I still got five days. It's all good."

During his throwing session, Hudson unleashed a number of pitches out of the stretch, mixing fastballs with breaking balls.

"I had to test it a little bit," Hudson said, smiling. "It should be good. It's been feeling a little bit better every day."

Hudson first felt pain in his left hip early in his last start Sunday against the Dodgers. Giants manager Bruce Bochy took Hudson out of that game after six innings. The next morning, Hudson felt more severe pain in his hip, and the Giants eventually decided to skip his turn in the rotation.

"I hate to miss one," Hudson said. "It's something I probably could have pitched through, but it would have been one of those things it could have dragged out a couple weeks. Better to get it and knock it out and get ready for the next time out full strength."

Bochy said he expects Hudson to make his next start.

"He's doing fine," Bochy said Saturday. "He's making improvement like we were hoping. I think tomorrow the plan is for him to throw a bullpen and we'll have a better idea of where we're at. I think all is good with him right now."

Worth noting

• Catcher Buster Posey was out of the starting lineup Saturday night, and Hector Sanchez made his 12th start of the season at catcher, with right-hander Tim Lincecum on the mound.

"He was going to get today or tomorrow off," Bochy said of Posey. "So I'm going to give him a day off."

Sanchez entered Saturday with 13 hits in his past 38 at-bats (.342) with two home runs and 13 RBIs. Sanchez caught Lincecum in his last start Monday. Lincecum allowed one run and two hits over 7 2/3 innings in a 4-2 victory against Atlanta, and Sanchez went 2-for-4 and scored a run.

• Bochy on having Tony La Russa in the National League West as Arizona's new chief baseball officer: "He'll bring a lot of knowledge, experience. It seems like this was something he really wanted, to get with a ballclub. I'm happy for him that he's got something that it seemed like he'd been looking for, so good for him."