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Surging Braves cut Lincecum down to size

Surging Braves cut Lincecum down to size

Posted: Thursday, July 23, 2009 5:54 pm
By: By CHARLES ODUM, AP Sports Writer

ATLANTA (AP) — Jair Jurrjens gave up three hits in 7 2/3 innings, Yunel Escobar hit a three-run homer and the surging Atlanta Braves beat Tim Lincecum and the San Francisco Giants 4-2 on Wednesday night.
Escobar’s third-inning homer gave the Braves the 4-0 lead over Lincecum, who lost for the first time in five weeks.
The Braves are 6-1 since the All-Star break and are 10-3 in their last 13 games overall.
Jurrjens (9-7) earned his third straight win and set a season high with nine strikeouts while allowing one run.
The Giants are 1-5 on their 10-game trip, including three straight losses to the Braves.
Overall, they have lost six of seven.
Lincecum (10-3), the NL’s All-Star starter, lost for the first time since June 17 and lost for the first time in six career starts against the Braves.
Lincecum pitched five innings, his second-shortest start of the season, allowing four runs and seven hits with nine strikeouts along the way.
Jurrjens gave up a second-inning single to Bengie Molina and didn’t allow another hit until Molina’s two-out single in the seventh.
Jurrjens left with two outs in the eighth after giving up Juan Uribe’s double and a walk to pinch-hitter Andres Torres.
Mike Gonzalez gave up an infield hit to Randy Winn as Uribe scored from third.
Rafael Soriano allowed a run in the ninth before earning his 14th save.
With two outs, Nate Schierholtz singled, took second base without a throw and scored on Travis Ishikawa’s single to right.
Soriano struck out Uribe to end the game.
Lincecum struck out seven in the first three innings but still gave up four runs in that span.
In the first, Lincecum struck out Nate McLouth and Martin Prado before giving up three straight singles.
Chipper Jones singled to left, stole second and scored on Brian McCann’s single. Garret Anderson added another hit before Lincecum ended the inning.
Prado singled in the third inning before Lincecum walked Anderson and gave up Escobar’s three-run homer to center field.
The homer was Escobar’s 10th, matching last season’s career high.
Escobar has three homers and 12 RBI in seven games since the All-Star break.
NOTES: McLouth was 1-for-4 after leaving Tuesday night’s game after the sixth inning with a mild lower back strain. … Giants SS Edgar Renteria was held out with a sore right elbow. … Giants CF Aaron Rowand (bruised right forearm) missed his second straight start and grounded out as a pinch-hitter in the eighth. … Casey Kotchman extended his career-best hitting streak to 14 games. … Jurrjens’ career high for strikeouts was 10 on Sept. 11, 2008, against Colorado.


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