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Chicago at San Francisco

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Chicago (19-32)000000000021
San Francisco (34-19) «00000230x582

Giants flirt with no-no, settle for two-hit shutout of Cubs

CBSSports.com wire reports
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SAN FRANCISCO -- Bruce Bochy remembered stressing out while watching Tim Lincecum labor through the final innings of his 148-pitch no-hitter at San Diego last July. The Giants manager said there was "no chance" of stretching out his starter again Wednesday, even after Lincecum logged five hitless innings.

Not with a blister forming on the tip of Lincecum's middle finger. Not with the Giants owning baseball's best record. And certainly, not with more than half of the season to play.

Instead, Lincecum and five relievers combined on a weird two-hitter to lead the San Francisco Giants to a 5-0 victory against the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday.

"He worked so hard out there. It was time," Bochy said.

The unconventional performance included 10 baserunners -- five walks, two hits, two errors and a hit batter -- before an announced sellout crowd of 41,186 at AT&T Park that wanted to cheer history.

Lincecum struck out five, walked four and hit a batter in another wild but effective start. George Kontos (1-0) retired four straight before John Baker singled through the right side of the infield with one out in the seventh against lefty Jeremy Affeldt for Chicago's first hit.

The Cubs hold the longest streak in the majors without being no-hit. The last time it happened to them was 1965, when Sandy Koufax pitched a perfect game for the Dodgers.

"What's the cliché? It's a game of inches," Baker said. "I think the Chicago Cubs are proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that baseball's a game of inches."

Hector Sanchez hit a two-run double, and three others drove in a run to help the Giants (34-19) extend the best record in the majors. San Francisco has won six of seven after holding the Cubs scoreless in consecutive games.

Edwin Jackson (3-5) gave up two runs on four hits in 5 1/3 innings for the Cubs, who have not won a road series since last September. He struck out nine and walked two.

But for most of a sunny afternoon along the bay, the focus remained on whether San Francisco's staff would complete an improbable no-hitter.

Lincecum had a 32-pitch first inning that ended on Nate Schierholtz's sharp lineout to first baseman Buster Posey with runners on second and third. He tossed another 20 in the second and pitched a perfect third.

The two-time NL Cy Young Award winner hit Schierholtz and overcame an error by shortstop Brandon Crawford on a grounder in the fourth. And after walking Emilio Bonifacio in the fifth, Lincecum got Junior Lake to ground into a double play.

It was the second successive erratic outing for Lincecum. He walked six in six innings in San Francisco's 6-2 victory against Minnesota last Friday.

Lincecum said a tiny blister began forming on the tip of his middle finger in the third. He said it's not serious, but he didn't want to risker further injury.

And with a no-hitter on his résumé already, he felt no need to lobby Bochy for another inning.

"I think it's just because I know what our bullpen is capable of," Lincecum said. "I just wanted to get the win today and put up some good numbers today, so it was good."

Jean Machi got two outs on three pitches, Juan Gutierrez allowed a single to Anthony Rizzo in 1 1/3 scoreless innings and Javier Lopez recorded the final two outs in the ninth.

San Francisco supplied support for the pitchers in the late innings.

Pablo Sandoval and Tyler Colvin drove in a run in the sixth, and Sanchez hit a two-run double to highlight a three-run seventh that gave the Giants a 5-0 lead.

Bochy said Sanchez will continue to catch Lincecum most of the season. He said the move is made, in part, to save Posey from the bumps and bruises that often come with catching Lincecum.

"We have a good relationship," Sanchez said, "and we work well together."

Notes

Giants RHP Matt Cain, who missed his last start with a strained right hamstring, threw a bullpen session and is on schedule to make his next start Saturday at St. Louis. ... The Cubs have Thursday off before beginning a three-game series at Milwaukee on Friday. ... LHP Madison Bumgarner (6-3, 3.15 ERA) starts for the Giants in the opener of a four-game series at St. Louis on Thursday.

 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Tim Lincecum, who pitched a no-no last July, gets the Giants started with five no-hit innings but is pulled after 96 pitches.  (USATSI)
Tim Lincecum, who pitched a no-no last July, gets the Giants started with five no-hit innings but is pulled after 96 pitches. (USATSI)

Players of the Game
San Francisco

H. Sanchez
AB 4
R 0
H 1
HR 0
RBI 2
San Francisco

A. Pagan
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
 
Chicago (N.L.) Cubs
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Emilio Bonifacio, 2B2000202 .273
Junior Lake, CF4000022 .264
Anthony Rizzo, 1B3010110 .264
Starlin Castro, SS4000000 .272
Nate Schierholtz, RF3000004 .206
Mike Olt, 3B4000022 .168
Chris Coghlan, LF2000012 .138
   a-Justin Ruggiano, PH-LF1000100 .225
John Baker, C3010102 .143
Edwin Jackson, P2000011 .091
   James Russell, P0000000 .000
   Brian Schlitter, P0000000 .000
   b-Darwin Barney, PH1000001 .184
   Justin Grimm, P0000000 .000
   c-Luis Valbuena, PH1000000 .256
Totals3002057  
a-walked for Coghlan in the 7th
b-hit into fielder's choice for Schlitter in the 7th
c-lined out for Grimm in the 9th
Batting
SB - Emilio Bonifacio (12, 2nd base off Lincecum/H. Sanchez)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
E - Mike Olt (4, Misplayed grounder)
Chicago (N.L.) Cubs
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Edwin Jackson (L,3-5) 5.1422290 4.81
James Russell 0100000 3.75
Brian Schlitter 0.2100100 2.42
Justin Grimm 2230110 2.74
IBB - Crawford by Brian Schlitter, Sandoval by Justin Grimm
WP - Edwin Jackson (4), Justin Grimm (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Edwin Jackson 99-60, James Russell 5-3, Brian Schlitter 10-4, Justin Grimm 29-18
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Edwin Jackson 1-5, Justin Grimm 3-3
Batters Faced - Edwin Jackson 21, James Russell 1, Brian Schlitter 4, Justin Grimm 10
San Francisco Giants
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Angel Pagan, CF3120010 .324
Hunter Pence, RF3100111 .290
Buster Posey, 1B4100021 .254
Pablo Sandoval, 3B3121100 .246
   Juan Gutierrez, P0000000 .000
   Javier Lopez, P0000000 .000
Hector Sanchez, C4012013 .247
Tyler Colvin, LF2011111 .295
   Jeremy Affeldt, P0000000 .000
   Jean Machi, P0000000 .000
   a-Joaquin Arias, PH-3B1000001 .143
Brandon Crawford, SS3010110 .247
Ehire Adrianza, 2B4000015 .152
Tim Lincecum, P1000010 .000
   b-Brandon Hicks, PH1000010 .184
   George Kontos, P0000000 .000
   Gregor Blanco, LF2110000 .188
Totals31584410  
a-grounded out for Machi in the 7th
b-struck out for Lincecum in the 5th
Batting
2B - Angel Pagan (12, Jackson), Hector Sanchez (7, Grimm), Tyler Colvin (8, Schlitter)
SH - Angel Pagan (1)
RBI - Pablo Sandoval (24), Hector Sanchez 2 (19), Tyler Colvin (7)
2-OUT RBI - Hector Sanchez 2 (7), Tyler Colvin (4)
PK - Angel Pagan (1, Jackson)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Crawford-Adrianza-Posey
E - Joaquin Arias (1, Misplayed grounder), Brandon Crawford (5, Misplayed grounder)
San Francisco Giants
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Tim Lincecum 5000450 4.18
George Kontos (W,1-0) 1.1000020 0.00
Jeremy Affeldt 0100100 1.56
Jean Machi (H,5) 0.2000000 0.35
Juan Gutierrez 1.1100000 3.42
Javier Lopez 0.2000000 1.80
HBP - Schierholtz (by Tim Lincecum)
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Lincecum 94-51, George Kontos 20-14, Jeremy Affeldt 8-3, Jean Machi 3-2, Juan Gutierrez 20-17, Javier Lopez 4-3
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Lincecum 7-3, George Kontos 1-1, Jean Machi 2-0, Juan Gutierrez 3-2, Javier Lopez 1-1
Batters Faced - Tim Lincecum 20, George Kontos 4, Jeremy Affeldt 2, Jean Machi 2, Juan Gutierrez 6, Javier Lopez 2
Game Information
Attendance - 41186
Game Time - 3:18
Temperature - 66
Umpires - Home - Chris Segal, First Base - Mike Muchlinski, Second Base - Mark Wegner, Third Base - Andy Fletcher