Rockies’ Jimenez is majors’ first 10-game winner
SAN FRANCISCO – Ubaldo Jimenez pitched a four-hitter to become the majors’ first 10-game winner this year, outpitching Tim Lincecum to lead the Colorado Rockies past the San Francisco Giants 4-0 in Monday’s highly anticipated Memorial Day matchup.
Clint Barmes hit a two-run single in the second inning that held up for Jimenez (10-1), who struck out nine, lowered his big league-best ERA to 0.78 and extended his career-best scoreless innings streak to 26. He pitched his fourth career complete game, second career shutout and second this year.
Lincecum (5-2), making his 100th start and matched up with Jimenez for the fourth time, walked five for the fourth straight start and the Giants had their four-game winning streak snapped.
In a game featuring two of baseball’s top right-handers, Jimenez improved to 3-1 head-to-head against Lincecum, the reigning two-time NL Cy Young winner. Jimenez retired nine straight before a two-out double to Pablo Sandoval in the ninth and a walk to Aubrey Huff that brought manager Jim Tracy to the mound for a visit. Jimenez got Juan Uribe on a liner to left to end the 128-pitch gem in 2 hours, 38 minutes.
Jimenez became the 15th pitcher since 1952 to win 10 or more games by June 1, with Brandon Webb the last to do it in 2008.
Todd Helton doubled in a run in the fifth as the Rockies kicked off a six-game road trip against the division in impressive fashion. Colorado added another run in the sixth on reliever Dan Runzler’s throwing error trying for a pickoff at first.
Barmes recorded his first career hit off Lincecum with the single. Barmes was 0 for 11 with four strikeouts against Lincecum coming into the game. Lincecum gave up consecutive walks to start the inning to Troy Tulowitzki on five pitches and then Brad Hawpe.
Both righties had to throw plenty of pitches early – Lincecum 43 and Jimenez 40 through two innings. Lincecum’s 32-pitch second inning followed a 1-2-3 first on 11 pitches.
Sandoval singled up the middle on the seventh pitch he saw from Jimenez and added another base hit in the fourth before the double in the ninth. Freddy Sanchez’s sixth-inning single was the Giants’ lone other hit.
Jimenez, who pitched the first no-hitter in Rockies history at Atlanta on April 17, was clocked at 99 mph several times. Tracy committed his top defensive lineup to back the team’s ace.
Lincecum lost back-to-back starts for just the fourth time in his career and first since Sept. 20 and 25 last year. He was tagged for six runs and six hits in 4 2-3 innings of a 7-3 loss to Washington on Wednesday.
Giants rookie sensation Buster Posey, called up Saturday and was 6 for 9 with four RBIs in his first two games of 2010, was 0 for 3.
Notes: Jimenez threw 80 strikes. … A moment of silence was held before the top of the seventh, then former major leaguer Ben Broussard sang God Bless America in the middle of the inning. … Lincecum intentionally walked more than one batter in the same game for the first time in his career. … San Francisco’s ace joins 37 others to make their first 100 starts with the Giants. Lincecum’s .714 winning percentage heading into Monday’s outing ranked him second among that group behind Sal Maglie at 60-19 (.759). … As planned, the Giants placed INF Ryan Rohlinger on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring that he hurt Sunday against Arizona. Matt Downs was recalled from Triple-A Fresno. … Rockies closer Huston Street will throw batting practice Tuesday at Triple-A Colorado Springs, a session pushed back a day based on availability of the field. Street is on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. … New University of San Francisco women’s basketball coach and icon Jennifer Azzi will throw out the ceremonial first pitch Wednesday night. … The Giants sold out for the seventh time (42,465).
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