Pittsburgh at San Francisco

W: T. Lincecum (7-13) L: F. Liriano (14-6) S: S. Romo (31)
HR: PIT - T. Sanchez (1)   SF - None

Posey, Sandoval power Giants past Pirates

CBSSports.com wire reports

SAN FRANCISCO -- Francisco Liriano didn't make a lot of consistent pitches in the strike zone. The few times when the Pirates left-hander did find his spots, the results were just as frustrating.

So much for chasing history.

Liriano lasted just four innings in his bid to become the first Pirates southpaw in more than 20 years with 15 wins, and the San Francisco Giants made their former farmhand pay for his lack of control in a 6-3 win over Pittsburgh on Saturday night.

"The whole night was a battle for me," said Liriano, who pitched with runners on base in every inning. "I was getting deep in counts, 3-2 counts a lot. Every time I made some good pitches they fouled them off or found a way to put them in play."

Nearly all of the damage off Liriano (14-6) came in the first when the Giants batted around and scored four times.

Liriano, who had allowed only one run over his previous 16 innings, gave up three straight hits to open the inning, including Buster Posey's broken-bat RBI single. Brett Pill followed with a check swing infield single that drove in Joaquin Arias and made it 2-0.

After Posey scored on Pablo Sandoval's groundout, Gregor Blanco added an RBI single to give the Giants a 4-0 lead.

"Just inconsistent command," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "He had to battle. It was a street fight for four innings. He didn't have it tonight. The rhythm was inconsistent and the command was inconsistent."

The Giants chased Liriano after the fourth but added on against the Pirates bullpen. Hector Sanchez was hit by a pitch with one out in the fifth and scored on a wild pitch by reliever Jared Hughes, making it 5-1.

Even when things went right for the Pirates, there was a twist.

Tony Sanchez hit his first career home run for Pittsburgh but the team was unable to retrieve the milestone ball. Fans in the outfield bleachers at AT&T Park threw a ball back onto the field but it was not one used by major league baseball.

The loss dropped the Pirates into a first-place tie with St. Louis in the NL Central with 33 games left in the regular season.

"People were worried about us being a .500 ballclub and the next thing you know we're neck and neck going into the end of the season," center fielder Andrew McCutchen. "The expectations, we exceeded those. Now we the opportunity to do even more."

Posey had three hits and Sandoval drove in two runs to back Tim Lincecum's uneven outing.

Lincecum (7-13) pitched into the sixth inning after two rocky starts for his first win in more than two weeks. The former two-time NL Cy Young winner walked four but struck out eight and pitched out of trouble in back-to-back innings before giving way to the bullpen.

Six San Francisco relievers completed the six-hitter. Sergio Romo worked the ninth for his 31st save.

"It was great to see us put up some early runs," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "We haven't done that in awhile, especially at home. Timmy rebounded from a rough start and I thought the early runs helped."

The Pirates knocked Lincecum out of the game in the sixth inning after McCutchen drew a one-out walk and Pedro Alvarez doubled. Pinch-hitter Gaby Sanchez singled off reliever Jose Mijares to drive in McCutchen. Tony Sanchez followed with an RBI single to trim the lead to 5-3.

Pittsburgh had the tying runs on base later in the inning but Machi struck out Andrew Lambo and got Cliff Barnes to ground out.

The Pirates also had two runners on in the seventh but failed to score.


Pirates leadoff hitter Starling Marte was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a bruised right hand before the game. Marte's replacement, Lambo, was called up from Triple-A Indianapolis before the game and went hitless in three at-bats. ... Giants LHP Jeremy Affeldt (groin strain) threw off a mound and could begin a rehab assignment as early as next week. ... San Francisco is 13-3 in its last 16 games when scoring four or more runs. ... Pittsburgh has 16 home runs over its last 13 games.

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Tim Lincecum pitches into the sixth inning after two rocky starts for his first win in more than two weeks. (USATSI)
Tim Lincecum pitches into the sixth inning after two rocky starts for his first win in more than two weeks. (USATSI)

Players of the Game
San Francisco

B. Posey
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 0

T. Sanchez
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1

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Jose Tabata, LF4030101 .274
Neil Walker, 2B4000112 .255
Andrew McCutchen, CF3100103 .321
Pedro Alvarez, 3B4110034 .235
Garrett Jones, 1B2000022 .237
   a-Gaby Sanchez, PH-1B2011000 .243
Tony Sanchez, C4122010 .220
Andrew Lambo, RF3000112 .083
Clint Barmes, SS3000013 .221
   Josh Harrison, RF1000000 .258
Francisco Liriano, P1000000 .075
   b-Felix Pie, PH1000011 .200
   Jordy Mercer, SS2000010 .276
a-singled for G. Jones in the 6th
b-struck out for Liriano in the 5th
2B - Jose Tabata (13, Romo), Pedro Alvarez (14, Lincecum)
HR - Tony Sanchez (1, Lincecum)
RBI - Gaby Sanchez (33), Tony Sanchez 2 (4)
Team LOB - 8
Pittsburgh Pirates
Francisco Liriano (L,14-6) 4944230 2.74
Jared Hughes 1111100 4.62
Vin Mazzaro 2111100 2.51
Bryan Morris 1000020 3.05
WP - Francisco Liriano (5), Jared Hughes (2), Vin Mazzaro (3)
HBP - H. Sanchez (by Jared Hughes)
Pitches-Strikes - Francisco Liriano 102-64, Jared Hughes 18-11, Vin Mazzaro 32-20, Bryan Morris 11-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Francisco Liriano 7-2, Jared Hughes 3-0, Vin Mazzaro 3-3, Bryan Morris 1-0
Batters Faced - Francisco Liriano 23, Jared Hughes 6, Vin Mazzaro 8, Bryan Morris 3
San Francisco Giants
Marco Scutaro, 2B4110100 .298
Joaquin Arias, SS-3B5110002 .273
Buster Posey, 1B5131010 .305
Hunter Pence, RF3110212 .279
Brett Pill, LF3111014 .254
   Roger Kieschnick, LF1000001 .258
Pablo Sandoval, 3B4012000 .267
Hector Sanchez, C2110101 .234
Gregor Blanco, CF4021001 .252
Tim Lincecum, P2000023 .087
   a-Brandon Crawford, PH-SS1000000 .271
a-popped out for Lopez in the 7th
2B - Joaquin Arias (7, Liriano)
SH - Tim Lincecum (6)
RBI - Buster Posey (64), Brett Pill (8), Pablo Sandoval 2 (61), Gregor Blanco (33)
2-OUT RBI - Pablo Sandoval (24), Gregor Blanco (16)
Team LOB - 10
DP - Arias-Scutaro-Posey
E - Marco Scutaro (13, Misplayed grounder)
San Francisco Giants
Tim Lincecum (W,7-13) 5.1333481 4.55
Jose Mijares 0100000 4.43
Jean Machi (H,5) 0.2100010 3.00
Sandy Rosario (H,5) 0.2100000 2.68
Javier Lopez (H,10) 0.1000010 1.99
Santiago Casilla (H,13) 1000000 1.78
Sergio Romo (S,31) 1100010 2.66
WP - Tim Lincecum (8)
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Lincecum 101-54, Jose Mijares 2-1, Jean Machi 7-6, Sandy Rosario 15-10, Javier Lopez 4-3, Santiago Casilla 14-8, Sergio Romo 14-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Lincecum 3-4, Jean Machi 1-0, Sandy Rosario 1-2, Santiago Casilla 1-2, Sergio Romo 2-0
Batters Faced - Tim Lincecum 22, Jose Mijares 1, Jean Machi 3, Sandy Rosario 4, Javier Lopez 1, Santiago Casilla 3, Sergio Romo 4
Game Information
Attendance - 42059
Game Time - 3:12
Temperature - 66
Umpires - Home - Kerwin Danley, First Base - Lance Barksdale, Second Base - Victor Carapazza, Third Base - Gary Cederstrom