SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants activated Pablo Sandoval from the disabled list before Monday's series opener against the Nationals, optioning Brett Pill to Triple-A Fresno to make room on the roster for the two-time All Star.

Manager Bruce Bochy had said before the announced roster move that Sandoval would be activated to play in the game but would not be in the starting lineup, and that he expects Sandoval to be back in the lineup for the next two games against the Nationals.

Sandoval appeared as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning of Monday's 14-2 loss, fouling out while batting right-handed.

"I wasn't going to start him all three games," Bochy said. "He says he feels great. The day off will be good. He should be 100 percent at that point."

Sandoval finished a three-game rehab assignment with Class A San Jose over the weekend, though he did not get any in-game ground balls while starting at third base.

After straining his left hamstring on July 24 while playing first base against the Padres, Sandoval said he still isn't running at full speed.

"I don't want to push it right now," Sandoval said. "But every day, I feel better and better."

Bochy said that Sandoval will initially strictly see time at third base, but did not rule out playing him at first base down the line.

"We're looking for him to be the guy he has been all year and drive in some runs," Bochy said.

Lopez shares fond memories of Pesky

SAN FRANCISCO -- The news of the passing of longtime Red Sox player and coach Johnny Pesky reverberated all the way to the Giants clubhouse, particularly with reliever Javier Lopez, who played for the Red Sox from 2006-09.

"He means a lot to the community up there," Lopez said. "He was always around and always part of the community, looking to give back -- not only for the players, but the community at large and the organization as a whole. He did a great job with that, and I think that there will be a time of mourning up in Boston and rightly so. It's a sad day up there, and I feel it myself. It's tough to say that you knew a guy like that and all of a sudden he's passed so quickly, how quickly time just kind of passes by."

Pesky was listed as a special-assignment instructor with the organization even at the time of his passing, and Lopez fondly recalls memories of Pesky hanging out with players in the clubhouse, where he had a locker.

"He was just one of those guys who would come in every once in a while with a smile on his face and was always happy to put on that uniform," Lopez said. "He's up there in years, so it was always fun to have him in there with us. We would get him dancing and stuff. We loved it. He was always just an upbeat character, and he loved to be around baseball, and it really showed the whole time."

Worth noting

• The Giants' 9-6 comeback win against the Rockies on Sunday marked the team's 26th come-from-behind win this season, but only their fourth one when trailing after seven innings.

• The club's back-to-back games scoring nine runs is the first such stretch at AT&T Park since Aug. 23-25, 2010, when the Giants scored at least nine runs in three straight games.

• The Giants' 151 runs since the second half are the second-best in the National League, trailing only the Nationals' 156 runs.