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Lincecum gets victory in Giants' win over Cubs

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Associated Press
9/1/2012 6:04:00 PM
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CHICAGO -- Xavier Nady delivered a three-run double in his first at-bat with the Giants, giving Tim Lincecum an early cushion Saturday and sending San Francisco to a 5-2 win over the Chicago Cubs.

"It's always nice, especially when you've got a guy like Lincecum on the mound. I was fortunate to come up with an opportunity to come up with a big hit. It was pretty neat," Nady said.

Nady, who'd been released by the Nationals in late July, was promoted from Triple-A by the division-leading Giants on Saturday and now has a chance to help them reach the playoffs.

"This is one of the reasons I was excited to play here. I knew I had to go down to Fresno and work on some things. I'm just glad to have the opportunity to be up here and contribute," he said.

The Giants are hoping Nady can give them some pop following Melky Cabrera's suspension.

"Without question, he can help us. He can help us out in left field, and he's going to get some playing time," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "He'll be out there tomorrow."

Lincecum, who'd gotten run support of two runs or fewer 16 times in his previous 27 starts, pitched four-hit ball over 6 1-3 innings. He was bolstered by the early offence.

"They scored big in the first inning to kind of give us a little bit of a lax edge," said Lincecum (8-14), who's won four straight road starts. "Just tried to pace myself through those six-plus innings. I hit some bumps here and there but just tried to throw as many strikes as I could."

Lincecum, who won back-to-back Cy Young awards in 2008 and 2009, allowed two runs on David DeJesus' seventh homer and struck out seven. He walked three.

"That's not the same guy we saw winning Cy Youngs. The command, the velocity with the fastball, that's completely different than it was a few years ago," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. "He knows how to get through lineups with his off-speed stuff, his changeup, his curveball."

Chicago starter Justin Germano retired the first two batters of the game, but yielded singles to Pablo Sandoval and Buster Posey, walked Hunter Pence and hit Hector Sanchez with a pitch to force in the first run. Nady then hit a hard grounder past third and into the left field corner to clear the bases.

Germano said he and Nady were once roommates in Triple-A.

"He's a good hitter and you definitely have to mix it up with him because he can hurt you with the long ball and hurt you with the drives in the gaps," Germano said. "He's strong, he's always been strong."

San Francisco made it 5-0 in the second on Angel Pagan's triple and Marco Scutaro's sacrifice fly.

Sergio Romo, the fourth Giants reliever of the day, pitched the ninth for his ninth save in 10 chances.

Germano (2-5) allowed six hits in five innings while throwing 93 pitches.

NOTES: The Cubs recalled OFs Tony Campana and Dave Sappelt and INF Adrian Cardenas from Triple-A Iowa. Manager Dale Sveum said callups will be used periodically but when the Cubs are playing first-place teams, he'll stick with his core lineup. He said despite Chicago's record, everybody on the roster should be trying to leave an impression for jobs next year. ... Gregor Blanco (19 strikeouts in his previous 41 at-bats) has been struggling at the plate but entered the game in the sixth to play left. "(Blanco) is not seeing the ball well. His timing is off at the plate," Bochy said, also acknowledging Blanco is San Francisco's best defensive outfielder. ... DeJesus made a nice sliding catch to retire Posey in the fifth. ... Announced attendance was 32,477. ... Lincecum is now 4-4 in 10 career starts against the Cubs.

Tim Lincecum (Photo: Brian Kersey/Getty Images)

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(Photo: Brian Kersey/Getty Images)
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