Right fielder Jason Heyward was in the Braves' lineup Thursday night, and outfielder Jose Constanza was on the bench for the first time since joining the major league team.

Since being promoted from Triple-A on July 29, Constanza caused a stir while hitting .385 in 18 consecutive starts - six in left field, three in center and nine in right ahead of struggling Heyward.

Manager Fredi Gonzalez gave Constanza a rest Thursday against the Giants and ace Tim Lincecum.

"You don't want Jason sitting for three, four, five days at a time," he said. "Get him in there. He's got a little bit of history against Lincecum [Heyward was 2-for-7 with three walks against him before Thursday]. Get him in there, see if he can get out of this thing."

Heyward has been in a funk for much of the season, exacerbated by a nagging shoulder injury that landed him on the disabled list from May 22 to June 15.

He hit .218 with 12 homers, 31 RBIs and a .310 on-base percentage before Thursday, including .222 with five homers and 17 RBIs in 49 games since returning from the DL. As a rookie in 2010, Heyward hit .277 with 18 homers, 72 RBIs and a .393 OBP.