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Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Tim Lincecum Struggles Early: Giants 10, Brewers 6

Tim Lincecum just gave up a four-pitch walk to Bill Hall but got out of the third in a very shaky performance. He's already thrown 78 pitches, 44 out of the zone, and might not make it through five. Interestingly enough, Tom Verducci listed Lincecum as one of the pitchers most likely to suffer from the Year After Effect. (Good news, Angels fans: Jon Lester is also on the list, and tops it. Bad news, Dodgers fans: both Chad Billingsley and Clayton Kershaw show up.)

The Giants are ahead 4-3, mainly thanks to a bases-clearing triple by Travis Ishikawa in the first.

Top 4th: The Giants yank Lincecum (4 H, 3 BB, 3 R, 3 ER, a wild pitch and a hit batter) and start the fourth with Joe Martinez, making his major league debut. Martinez owned a 3.57 ERA in 22.2 innings in spring training.

After plunking Rickie Weeks, Corey Hart and Prince Fielder drive in runs off Martinez on RBI singles to give the Brewers the lead 5-4. Martinez gets out of it with a double play, but the Giants have some hitting to do.

Bottom 4th: Aaron Rowand rocks a two-run jack just fair of the left field foul pole to make it 6-5 Giants. A slugfest at AT&T Park?

Bottom 5th: Seth McClung gets himself into trouble, walking Aaron Rowand to load the bases and then walking Emmanuel Burriss on four pitches to drive in the Giants' seventh run of the game. 7-5 Giants, but McClung recovers to limit the damage there after Nate Shierholz taps out to Prince Fielder — who then almost throws the ball away, but the 6'6" McClung jumps high enough to make the catch.

Bottom 7th: Bengie Molina greets reliever Dave Bush with a leadoff homer to make it 8-5 Giants. After Pablo Sandoval doubles, that's enough for the Brewers to get pitchers warming up in the bullpen.

Aaron Rowand doubled in Sandoval, but that was it for the Giants, as Bush muddled his way out of the inning. 9-5 Giants.

Bottom 8th: It's becoming a rout as Randy Winn blasts one off Jorge Julio into AT&T's "Death Valley" in right center, extending the lead to 10-5 Giants. Julio gives up a single to Pablo Sandoval, but that's it.

Top 9th: Alex Hinshaw walks two of the four batters he faces, getting a double play ball to erase the first, but giving up a run when Bill Hall whacked a 3-2 pitch down the left field line for a double. 10-6 Giants, and Bruce Bochy is calling for Brian Wilson to nail down the last out; Wilson managed to strike out Jason Kendall to end the game.

Andrew Baggarly of the Mercury-News reports Lincecum is uninjured, but was pulled due to his lack of command.

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tim_lincecum didn't have his A game as usual. He was missing high with all his fastballs, probably just opening day jitters and a ton of pressure on this kid to be the savior. He'll be back don't worry. The Giants offense looked awesome and really picked him up!

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