Everything went right for Aubrey Huff in 2010, when he was a key cog in the Giants' run to their first World Series title in 56 years.
But not much has gone right since for the big San Francisco first baseman, who has struggled at the plate and twice been placed on the disabled list this season.
Huff's latest setback is the result of a right knee injury he suffered June 13 while celebrating Matt Cain's perfect game. As Huff hopped over the dugout railing to rush the mound at AT&T Park, he tripped and landed hard on his knee.
"I hit a teammate to my left, he checked me back to my right, my foot got caught on the top rail and I went straight down, face first," Huff said. "I caught myself with my hands, but the first thing that hit when I came down was my right knee.
"I hit pretty hard. It's about a 4½-foot drop."
The 35-year-old Huff started his rehabilitation assignment with Single-A San Jose, hitting .250 (4-for-16) with a home run and three RBIs in five games before going 1-for-4 for Fresno (51-44) on Monday and 0-for-4 in Tuesday's 5-4 loss to the 51s (54-42) at Cashman Field.
"The knee's responding well," he said. "I had a setback in San Jose after a couple games, but I bounced back there and now it feels good.
"I'll probably play a few more games here and we should be ready to go."
Huff said his knee held up well running the bases Monday, when he singled and scored in the first inning.
"I haven't had to slide yet, but other than that, it feels fine," he said.
In 32 games for the Giants this season, Huff is batting .155 (9-for-58) with a homer and five RBIs, but he said he's not too concerned with his numbers in the minors.
"I'm just trying to stay healthy, get healthy," he said.
A .278 hitter in parts of 13 seasons for Tampa Bay, Houston, Baltimore, Detroit and San Francisco, Huff has topped 20 homers seven times, 100 RBIs three times and earned the American League's 2008 Silver Slugger award at designated hitter.
After spending his first nine full seasons on losing teams, Huff joined the Giants in 2010 and led them in batting average (.290), homers (26) and RBIs (86). He homered and had four RBIs in San Francisco's five-game World Series victory over the Texas Rangers.
"The other nine years of my career where I never made the playoffs, I never had too much fun playing," he said. "When I finally got to the postseason with the Giants, it was the best group of guys I ever played with. I had a blast.
"After nine years of losing, I'll take nine more to do that all over again. That was worth it."
Shortly after the World Series, San Francisco re-signed Huff to a $22 million, two-year contract. But he slumped to a .246 average with 12 homers and 59 RBIs last season and is at a loss to explain his struggles.
"I just stunk," he said. "If I could explain it, I wouldn't do it."
A free spirit who started wearing a red "rally thong" late in the 2010 season to try to help loosen up his teammates, "Huff Daddy" was placed on the DL in April with an anxiety disorder.
"I don't want to talk about that," said Huff, who remains confident he can regain his prior form.
"If I can get healthy, I'm pretty confident in anything I do out there," he said. "I feel like I can hit for years as long as I'm healthy."
■ NOTE - The Blue Jays called up 51s center fielder Anthony Gose to replace outfielder Jose Bautista, who was placed on the 15-day DL with left wrist inflammation. Gose, who was hitting .292 for the 51s, was 1-for-2 Tuesday in a 6-1 loss to the Yankees.
Contact reporter Todd Dewey at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0354.