Henry Blanco is the rarest of players -- a veteran who not only knows and accepts his role, but one who also thrives in it.
Blanco made only his fifth start of the season in the Diamondbacks' 35th game Wednesday, although the intermittent action did not show. He singled, homered and drove in two runs in the D-backs' 4-3 loss to San Francisco. Blanco produced his second two-hit game, and second homer, in as many starts.
"At this point, every backup catcher in the game, when we get in there, we just try to win games," Blanco said. "We know it is hard to get hits, to keep the rhythm. But all I worry about is winning games and trying to do as much as I can.
"It doesn't make a difference if I am playing once a week or playing three days (a week), I understand my job. I always prepare. Work hard every day. Just try to maintain my body. That's the most important thing. I have to be ready when the situation arises."
Blanco's single in the second inning gave the D-backs a 2-0 lead, and his two-out homer in the third made it 3-0 before the Giants stated a comeback against right-hander Armando Galarraga. Blanco takes pride in handling his staff and acting as a deterrent to the running game.
Blanco has thrown out about 43 percent of the runners who have tried to steal on him in his career, among the best marks in recent times. The Giants did not attempt to run Wednesday.
"He hasn't played as much as he probably will. He's a veteran guy, he understands how to stay ready," said D-backs manager Kirk Gibson, who has given No. 1 catcher Miguel Montero 30 starts. "I can't catch Miggy over 150 games. He wouldn't make it."
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