Manager Ozzie Guillen believes Cuban import Alexei Ramirez should have more home runs despite the lack of playing time and getting acclimated to playing in cold conditions for the first time.
Friday night, Ramirez finally got a chance to display his power.
Ramirez hit his first major-league home run, a two-run shot with two out in the seventh inning, to vault the White Sox to a 2-0 interleague victory at San Francisco.
Ramirez was starting at second base only because Juan Uribe is recovering from a right hamstring strain that could keep him out until Sunday.
This was Ramirez's first home run in 45 at-bats after hitting 20 for Pinar del Rio in the Cuban League last season.
"This kid works a lot, we make sure we keep him working, like extra hitting," Guillen said. "One (reason) why we keep him here is because we need him. He can play different positions."
Guillen believes Ramirez, 26, is needed more on the major-league roster than going to the minors to get more playing time.
"It's something about development or playing," Guillen said. "I rather have him here because I can use him different ways.
"Obviously, it's only 11/2 months in the season. Maybe later he will have more playing time. If he continues to swing like that, we'll see what happens."
The talks with Ramirez at times have been frank.
"We tell him this isn't Cuba any more and you're not going to face Olympic pitching," Guillen said.
Ramirez sported a big smile and the home run ball after the game.
"First, I work hard," Ramirez said. "And I keep concentrating on the game. I get a lot of support from my family."
Ramirez said he got a call from his wife after the game.
Starting pitcher Gavin Floyd (4-2) weaved out of trouble for all six innings he pitched but got the win.
"You get yourself in trouble, you get yourself out of trouble," Guillen said.
"That's how you learn."
Outside of the retirement of Giants managing general partner Peter Magowan after 16 seasons, Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski was the center of attention as soon as he stepped on the field.
He received some pleasant handshakes with a few Giants staffers but got into an argument with a Giants publicist during batting practice.
As expected, Pierzynski was showered with boos in each of his at-bats.
The Giants, however, knew Pierzynski and the Sox's knack for not holding on runners despite playing in the National League.
Fred Lewis led off the bottom of the first with a walk and easily stole second base and advanced to third when Pierzynski's throw sailed into center field for an error.
By Floyd retired the next three batters and left Lewis stranded with Aaron Rowand on deck.
Floyd and Rowand were teammates in Philadelphia in 2006, but Floyd gave his former mate a less-than-warm greeting by hitting Rowand in his first two plate appearances.
In the sixth, Pierzynski hit a two-out triple off the wall in right center.
It was his first triple since Aug. 22, 2004, against the New York Mets while playing for the Giants.
Carlos Quentin then drew a walk, but Jonathan Sanchez struck out Jermaine Dye on a curve to end the threat.
Pierzynski was less impressed with the mild-mannered boos during each at-bat.
"(The boos) were weak," Pierzynski said. "I got booed better in Anaheim than here. I got booed more when I played here (in 2004) than I did tonight.
"I wanted to step out and tip my cap."Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun