San Francisco Giants 2, San Diego Padres 1: Another positive step for Tim Lincecum

BOX SCORE

Tim Lincecum is still not the Tim Lincecum we are used to seeing dominate teams. But he made another positive step in that direction.

After getting his first win of the season Monday in New York, Lincecum got another win in a solid eight-inning, 122-pitch outing against the Padres.

So let’s break it down, the good and the bad.

GOOD: He got his first quality start of the season, giving up no earned runs in eight innings. His ERA is at 5.74 now.

BAD: His velocity is still not what we’re used to seeing. He hit 90 and 91 at spots, but was consistently at 89 mph most of the game.

GOOD: He stayed at 89 mph all the way through the game, even as his pitch count got up into the 120s.

BAD: He struggled to knock batters out with a strikeout pitch. He only had five, his second lowest-total this season despite facing a season-high 31 batters. And three of those strikeouts were to the opposing pitcher, Anthony Bass.

GOOD: Even though the Padres were hitting the ball, they were making outs. The Padres only managed three hits and none of them left the infield: a swinging bunt by Jesus Guzman in the first inning,  a grounder by Yonder Alonso to second baseman Emmanuel Burriss in the second inning which was originally rules an error (correctly), then changed to a hit (incorrectly), and a bunt single by Will Venable in the eighth.

BAD: Lincecum walked four.

GOOD: Yes, but only one of them came after the third inning.

BAD: If not for two stellar running catches to the warning track by Melky Cabrera in left, it would have been much worse for Lincecum.

GOOD: After those hard shots in the fourth, Lincecum set down 8 of the next 9 without much fuss. In fact those outs by Cabrera were part of a stretch when Lincecum retired 12 of 13.

BAD: It was the Padres.

GOOD: It’s part of a longer stretch. Lincecum has now allowed one earned run in the past 13 innings (0.62 ERA) and two earned runs in his past 17 innings (1.06 ERA).

OTHER NOTES

  • Pablo Sandoval went 0 for 4 to end his season-opening hitting streak at 20. A blessing in disguise maybe. The Panda appeared to be pressing in recent days and did not look good Saturday, making out on first pitches three times.
  • Angel Pagan’s bunt single in the eighth extended his hitting streak to 13 games.
  • Brandon Belt had the big hit with his two-run double in the seventh inning. He’s hitting .278 now.
  • Lincecum broke up Bass’ perfect game bid with an infield single in the sixth.
  • Santiago Casilla recorded his third save in three tries, striking out one and only allowing a baserunner on his own error.
  • Before the game, the Giants sent pitcher Eric Hacker back to Fresno after his quality start Friday and called up reliever Steve Edlefsen to give them seven pitchers in the bullpen again.

UP NEXT

Madison Bumgarner faces lefty Clayton Richard. No word whether Saturday’s hero Belt will be in there vs. a lefty or if we’ll see Brett Pill, or even Buster Posey at 1B (day game after night game) and Hector Sanchez catching. We’ll look for Belt in there (either at first or left field) and scuffling Nate Schierholtz to get a day off.

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