SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — San Francisco Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval is thin and happy.
He showed up at the Giants' spring camp a few days ago after a winter of rejuvenation in his native Venezuela. He refined his nutritional intake, got in shape and played a little ball in the Venezuelan Winter League. The result is a noticeable weight loss.
How much is up for debate — he would not divulge how much he has dropped when he met with the media. He has been listed at 240. He said reports that the weight loss reached 40 pounds were incorrect.
As for what is behind the transformation --he had a similar one between 2010 and 2011 - Sandoval said it doesn't necessarily have anything do to with the fact that his three-year, $17.15 million deal expires after the season.
Sandoval said he would be open to discussing an extension before the season begins. General Manager Brian Sabean indicated recently the Giants also might be willing to make something happen.
"I'm not going to say no. If it happens, it happens," Sandoval said.
At 27, he is entering his prime.
"I'm happy with myself and want to come out and show my talents," he said after hitting .278 with 14 home runs and 79 RBIs in 2013, a year in which he spent some time on the disabled list.
"People say I can do a lot better. I just want to show that I have grown up and that I take my job seriously. But I really don't care what other people say."
Unless those other people happen to be teammates.
Sandoval said he talked to a handful of teammates toward the end of last season about his approach. They included starting pitcher Matt Cain, catcher Buster Posey and outfielder Hunter Pence.
"I feel blessed to hear from those guys. When a former MVP (Posey) says something, you listen," Sandoval said.