SAN FRANCISCO — Tim Lincecum couldn’t have chosen a worse time to have the shortest start of his career.
With Jake Peavy and Matt Cain just about set to return to the rotation, and the coaching staff discussing daily the possibility of bumping a starter to the bullpen, Lincecum got just four outs in a 10-2 loss to the Dodgers on Sunday night. The right-hander has a 3.86 ERA overall, but has given up 21 runs over 27 innings in his last six starts.
Lincecum was knocked out in a four-run second inning full of scorched base hits. He had given up a run in the first and two singles and a sac bunt got the Dodgers rolling early in the second. Yasiel Puig was 10 for 18 against Lincecum when he strode to the plate, and he lined the 10th pitch of the at-bat up the middle to score two. Joc Pederson got a 74 mph curveball from Lincecum and smacked a double to right that had an exit velocity of 109 mph. Justin Turner’s sharp single to left made it 5-0 and ended Lincecum’s day.
Yusmeiro Petit entered and didn’t fare much better as the Dodgers turned the series finale into a blowout. Petit gave up homers to Yasmani Grandal (twice), Adrian Gonzalez and Turner, who has four homers against the Giants this season.
The Giants had won nine of 11 this season against the Dodgers, and would have moved into first place in the National League West with a win Sunday.
Starting pitching report: Only twice in 259 previous big league starts had Lincecum failed to record at least nine outs, and this was the first time he didn’t pitch at least two innings as a big league starter.
Bullpen report: For the first time in his career, Petit gave up four homers in one game. Petit took over for Lincecum in the second and gave up a blast in the third, two in the fourth and a two-run homer in the fifth. He somehow wasn’t the first Giant to give up four homers in a game at Dodger Stadium this season. Ryan Vogelsong did it here April 29. Petit was the first Giants reliever since Alan Embree in 2001 to allow four homers in an appearance.
At the plate: Andrew Susac had a single and a double, raising his average to .265.
In the field: Brandon Belt has mostly looked good while tracking fly balls in left field, but he kicked a single to left, allowing Turner to take an extra base.
Attendance: The Dodgers announced a crowd of 53,509 human beings. All of them enjoyed Sunday evening more than Dustin Johnson did.
Up next: Three with the Padres, and the Giants will see some good pitching. Odrisamer Despaigne is as tough on the Giants as anybody, and he’ll be followed by Ian Kennedy and James Shields. The Giants counter with Madison Bumgarner, Ryan Vogelsong and Chris Heston.