Bochy pleased with Giants' recent spring effort

Posey dealing with sore shoulder; Casilla struggling in Arizona climate

Bochy pleased with Giants' recent spring effort

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Giants manager Bruce Bochy insisted he's not worried about his club's rising total of defeats, which has assured San Francisco of its first sub-.500 preseason record since 2008 (9-23).

Wednesday's 5-2 loss to Colorado dropped the Giants to 6-18, with one tie. They have lost six of their last seven games and are 2-6 since Bochy criticized them March 17 for their lackluster spring performance.

Though the defending World Series champions have continued losing, Bochy has noticed improvement. All but one of their losses since his lecture have been by margins of three runs or fewer. Before Bochy blasted the team, they dropped seven games by at least five runs.

"I just look at the quality of play," Bochy said. "Except for a couple of mistakes, it's been better."

• Bochy related that catcher Buster Posey is dealing with a mildly sore shoulder. Nevertheless, Bochy said Posey will be in Thursday's lineup at first base, where he has occasionally played since ascending to the Major Leagues in 2010. Posey left Wednesday's game after only two at-bats.

Santiago Casilla yielded a ninth-inning run Wednesday, hiking his spring ERA to 8.00 in eight appearances. Bochy maintained confidence in Casilla, reiterating that he reported to camp in top physical condition and suggesting the closer needed to escape Arizona's thin air, which can render breaking pitches ineffective. "We'll get in some weather where his ball moves," Bochy said.

Tim Hudson became the first Giants pitcher to work six innings this spring, but the most memorable moment of his performance was his third-inning double off the base of the left-field wall. Asked if he regretted his decision to try to take an extra base, Hudson replied, "About three steps past first." The right-hander jokingly added that when he tossed his warmup pitches in the bottom of the inning, "I thought I was going to pass out."

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.