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Rockies rock Lincecum, rally to take down Giants

CBSSports.com wire reports
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DENVER -- Tim Lincecum was off-target whether he was throwing to home plate or second base.

Carlos Gonzalez capped a five-run sixth-inning outburst with a three-run homer off the unusually wild Giants ace and the Colorado Rockies rallied for a 7-4 win over San Francisco Monday night.

"It was just bad location, a change-up up," Lincecum said. "This kind of place and that kind of hitter? Not really a good pitch."

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Seth Smith also homered off Lincecum (3-4), who set up the Rockies' big inning with a throwing error to second base on a potential double-play comebacker that led to four unearned runs.

Lincecum allowed seven runs, three of them earned, on nine hits and walked six in 5 2/3 innings, a far cry from his last trip to Coors Field in April, when he flirted with a no-hitter.

"I was struggling with location all day," Lincecum said. "Six walks is not good."

The Rockies turned four double plays, Clayton Mortensen (1-0) pitched six solid innings for his first win in a Rockies uniform and Huston Street closed out the ninth inning for his 13th save in 14 tries.

Lincecum's start was pushed back a day when the Giants were rained out Sunday at Chicago, so instead of facing the Cubs, he got to see the struggling Rockies, who had lost 10 of 13 games this month.

"Maybe it's an omen," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said before the game, reasoning they were going to have to snap out of their funk against someone, so why not the two-time Cy Young Award winner?

His words proved prophetic as the Rockies beat the Giants for just the second time in seven tries and pulled within one-half game of the Giants atop the NL West.

"To put a comeback on one of the best pitchers in the game obviously is more than just a win," Troy Tulowitzki said. "Against that team, and trailing them in the division and them beating us up the whole year, it was a big answer for us.

"To make a comeback against one of the best goes to show you can do it against anybody."

Lincecum, who allowed three hits in 7 2/3 innings at Coors Field on April 18, gave up a hit to the Rockies' second batter, Jonathan Herrera, ending that bit of drama. But he was still dealing it, stretching his scoreless inning streak to 21 before giving up Tulowitzki's bases-loaded two-run single that put Colorado ahead 2-1 in the fifth.

Those were the first runs Lincecum had allowed since April 29 at Washington, and the inning began with a walk to Mortensen.

"When you walk the pitcher that can make for a bad day," Lincecum said.

Colorado's lead vanished quickly as Andres Torres led off the sixth with his first homer of the year, a no-doubt drive down the right field line off Mortensen, and then Nate Schierholtz sent a change-up into the same section for a two-run homer, his third of the season, that gave the Giants a 4-2 lead.

That's when things fell apart for Lincecum, who served up Smith's fourth homer leading off the bottom of the inning and then threw wildly to second base on a potential double-play comebacker off the bat of Jose Morales, putting runners at first and second with nobody out.

"I was waiting for someone to get there," said Lincecum, who threw the ball past shortstop Miguel Tejada. "I think it came back to me quicker than I expected. I was waiting for Tejada to get there and I yanked the throw."

After pinch-hitter Alfredo Amezaga struck out, Dexter Fowler singled home the tying run.

Herrera followed that with a single to center that seemingly loaded the bases. But when Morales reached third he had to keep going because Fowler never slowed down rounding second, figuring Morales would be waved home when Torres bobbled the ball in center. First baseman Aubrey Huff's relay throw to the plate beat him by several steps.

No matter, Gonzalez sent Lincecum to the showers when he drove his 2-2 changeup in the rock pile in center field for a three-run shot, his fifth, that gave Colorado a 7-4 lead.

"I was expecting that pitch, offspeed, the whole time," Gonzalez said. "He's done it before to me a lot, with two strikes especially."

The Giants put the tying run at the plate with two outs in the eighth but Matt Lindstrom struck out pinch-hitter Pat Burrell looking.

Mortensen, who was acquired from Oakland last winter, allowed four runs on seven hits in six innings in picking up his first win since Sept. 17, 2009, against Cleveland while pitching for the Athletics.

"I wouldn't say I'm super pleased, but hey, we got a 'W' on the board," Mortensen said. "That's what matters. That's what I'm happy about."

Notes

  • Tracy had a closed-door meeting in the clubhouse with his players before the game to address their prolonged funk.
  • The Giants haven't scored more than four runs in their last 11 games, but they're 8-3 in that stretch.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Tim Lincecum doesn't know what to make of his rough start in Denver, giving up seven runs (three earned) in 5 2/3 innings.   (AP)
Tim Lincecum doesn't know what to make of his rough start in Denver, giving up seven runs (three earned) in 5 2/3 innings. (AP)

Players of the Game
Colorado

C. Gonzalez
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 3
San Francisco

N. Schierholtz
AB 2
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
 
San Francisco Giants
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Andres Torres, CF4111012 .340
Freddy Sanchez, 2B4030010 .272
Aubrey Huff, 1B4110003 .220
Buster Posey, C4020002 .264
Nate Schierholtz, RF2112201 .286
Cody Ross, LF1000100 .235
    Jeremy Affeldt, P0000000 .000
   a- Pat Burrell, PH1000012 .230
    Dan Runzler, P0000000 .000
Mark DeRosa, 3B4000012 .188
Miguel Tejada, SS4120001 .204
Tim Lincecum, P1000011 .053
    Aaron Rowand, LF2000021 .258
Totals31410337  
a-struck out for Affeldt in the 8th
Batting
2B - Miguel Tejada (7, Mortensen)
HR - Andres Torres (1, Mortensen), Nate Schierholtz (3, Mortensen)
SH - Tim Lincecum (4)
RBI - Andres Torres (3), Nate Schierholtz 2 (11)
2-OUT RBI - Nate Schierholtz 2 (5)
SB - Cody Ross (1, 2nd base off Mortensen/Morales)
CS - Nate Schierholtz (3, 2nd base by Mortensen/Morales)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Andres Torres 1
E - Tim Lincecum (1, Throwing)
San Francisco Giants
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Tim Lincecum (L,3-4) 5.2973632 2.36
Jeremy Affeldt 1.1100010 5.28
Dan Runzler 1000200 7.00
IBB - Morales by Tim Lincecum
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Lincecum 118-67, Jeremy Affeldt 15-12, Dan Runzler 20-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Lincecum 7-5, Jeremy Affeldt 2-1, Dan Runzler 1-1
Batters Faced - Tim Lincecum 30, Jeremy Affeldt 5, Dan Runzler 4
Colorado Rockies
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Dexter Fowler, CF3221200 .254
Jonathan Herrera, 2B3120100 .292
Carlos Gonzalez, LF4113102 .234
Troy Tulowitzki, SS4012001 .253
Todd Helton, 1B4010001 .322
Seth Smith, RF3111111 .280
Jose Lopez, 3B3120101 .185
Jose Morales, C3000113 .212
Clayton Mortensen, P1100112 .000
   a- Alfredo Amezaga, PH1000012 .313
    Matt Belisle, P0000000 .000
    Matt Reynolds, P0000000 .000
    Rafael Betancourt, P0000000 .000
    Matt Lindstrom, P0000000 .000
   b- Ryan Spilborghs, PH1000000 .210
    Huston Street, P0000000 .000
Totals30710784  
a-struck out for Mortensen in the 6th
b-flied out for Lindstrom in the 8th
Batting
2B - Jose Lopez (2, Affeldt)
HR - Carlos Gonzalez (5, Lincecum), Seth Smith (4, Lincecum)
SH - Jonathan Herrera (3)
RBI - Dexter Fowler (14), Carlos Gonzalez 3 (23), Troy Tulowitzki 2 (26), Seth Smith (18)
2-OUT RBI - Carlos Gonzalez 3 (8)
SB - Seth Smith (3, 2nd base off Lincecum/Posey)
CS - Dexter Fowler 2 (5, 2nd base by Lincecum/Posey, 2nd base by Runzler/Posey), Carlos Gonzalez (1, 3rd base by Lincecum/Posey)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Herrera-Tulowitzki-Helton, Tulowitzki-Helton, Tulowitzki-Herrera-Helton, Herrera-Tulowitzki-Helton
Colorado Rockies
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Clayton Mortensen (W,1-0) 6744242 2.01
Matt Belisle (H,3) 0.2100010 4.15
Matt Reynolds (H,6) 0.1000000 3.48
Rafael Betancourt (H,12) 0.2200100 3.50
Matt Lindstrom (H,8) 0.1000010 1.56
Huston Street (S,13) 1000010 3.32
HBP - Ross (by Clayton Mortensen)
WP - Clayton Mortensen (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Clayton Mortensen 70-44, Matt Belisle 12-9, Matt Reynolds 7-5, Rafael Betancourt 19-12, Matt Lindstrom 6-3, Huston Street 9-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Clayton Mortensen 7-3, Matt Belisle 1-0, Rafael Betancourt 1-0, Huston Street 1-1
Batters Faced - Clayton Mortensen 24, Matt Belisle 3, Matt Reynolds 1, Rafael Betancourt 4, Matt Lindstrom 1, Huston Street 3
Game Information
Attendance - 33228
Game Time - 2:53
Temperature - 60
Umpires - Home - Tim Tschida, First Base - Jeff Nelson, Second Base - Marty Foster, Third Base - Bill Welke