Giants 13, Diamondbacks 0
Lincecum’s day was tough to ignore, even for Bonds—hardly one to go out of his way to talk about the successes of others in the past.
Lincecum struck out a career-high 12 batters and got a key hit from Bonds in one of the pitcher’s finest efforts yet, a seven-inning gem in the Giants’ 13-0 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday.
“It’s something that’s expected. He has the talent. He has the ability,” Bonds said of his 23-year-old teammate. “We told him, ‘It’s not how hard you throw it, it’s where you throw it.’ Today, he located great.”
“We needed it. I feel like I needed it,” said Lincecum, who ended a frustrating six-start winless stretch. “It’s just something great for us to feed off.”
Bonds had already stepped into the batter’s box twice when he finally got an actual at-bat in the fifth. Arizona didn’t dare walk him this time with the bases loaded.
For the second straight day, Bonds took advantage of a rare chance with a double, this time lining a two-run double to right. Bonds also walked twice and grounded out after learning before the game he’d earned his 14th All-Star nod for the game in his home ballpark July 10—and first since 2004.
“I’m at a loss for words right now,” Bonds said. “It just means more ‘cause I’m at home. This is my town. This is my house. You can’t say enough about being at home. It’s great. This is the one I’ll remember all time. This is the one I’ll remember forever.”
Arizona outfielder Eric Byrnes, who grew up in the Bay Area, was left of the National League roster, finishing 23rd in the voting.
“Whatever. I said all along I’m just happy to put myself in position to make the team. If it doesn’t happen, so it goes,” Byrnes said. “If what I’ve done is not good enough, it’s not good enough. I’m sure there are other deserving guys out there. It would have been nice to come back and play here. I’m from here and it would have been a dream come true. I’m not going to lose any sleep over it.”
Bonds’ double was his 2,900th career hit and 377th double with the Giants, moving him past his godfather, Hall of Famer Willie Mays, and into sole possession of first place in San Francisco history.
Klesko followed Bonds’ leadoff walk in the fourth with a two-run homer and singled in a run behind Bonds in San Francisco’s six-run fifth. Dave Roberts started the big inning with a leadoff triple, then Fred Lewis walked before four straight hits.
The Giants offense had another productive day in San Francisco’s second straight win on the heels of a three-game losing streak.
Bonds was intentionally walked for 29th time in the first with Roberts on second and two outs. It was Bonds’ 83rd free pass overall after he drew three walks a night earlier, when he had an RBI double in his lone at-bat.
The move by manager Bob Melvin worked out. Klesko grounded out to end the inning. Bonds walked again on a 3-2 count in the fourth.
Lincecum (3-2) earned his first victory since May 22 against Houston. The hard-throwing right-hander nicknamed “Franchise” by his teammates, the Giants’ top pick at 10th overall last year out of Washington, didn’t walk a batter for the first time.
Lincecum struck out the side in order in the fourth, walking off the mound to a roaring ovation. Those three K’s gave the rookie nine already, after he had two in each of the first three innings.
“It’s hard to pitch better than that,” San Francisco skipper Bruce Bochy said.
Micah Owings (5-3) lasted only four innings, allowing seven earned runs and eight hits.
Bonds played in a day game after a night game, not always his practice in recent seasons when he wasn’t as healthy.
The slugger certainly appears as relaxed as ever. When he came off the field after pregame hitting, a young fan screamed, “Have a great game, Barry!”
Bonds held a bat in each hand and raised them in the air to salute the crowd next to the Giants’ dugout. He waved to another group just before disappearing down the dugout steps.
The treatment won’t be quite as friendly this week, when the Giants embark on their final road trip of the first half—with a three-game series starting Tuesday in Cincinnati, then three more against the Cardinals in St. Louis.
Bonds has an eight-game hitting streak. … Klesko returned to the lineup after he was a late scratch Saturday night with a mild abdominal strain on his right side. … Lincecum’s previous strikeout high was 10 on May 17 against Houston. … The Giants scored 13 or more runs for only the third time this year after also winning 13-0 exactly a month earlier, on June 1 at Philadelphia.