Errors cost Giants in 5-4 loss to Rockies
By ANTONIO GONZALEZ
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Tim Lincecum's latest outing yielded little to the opposition.
His defense handed them everything else.
Marco Scutaro homered off closer Santiago Casilla to lead off the ninth inning and lift the Rockies past the mistake-prone San Francisco Giants 5-4 on Tuesday night. The Giants committed three errors to wipe out a solid start by Lincecum and a late-inning rally from three runs down.
"It's not a step forward or backward. It's just another game," Lincecum said. "I put myself in tough situations and I couldn't put a stop to it. I've been known to get out of jams like that. I feel bad I couldn't pick the guys up and keep the score where it was. I don't want to put any more pressure on the guys to have to pick me up."
Scutaro smacked a 92 mph fastball from Casilla (0-2) just over the left-field wall for his first home run of the season after Colorado blew a three-run lead in the eighth.
Rex Brothers (2-2) struck out Brandon Belt and Melky Cabrera with the bases loaded in the eighth. Rafael Betancourt struck out Nate Schierholtz looking with two on in the ninth - following a questionable check swing a pitch earlier that had Rockies manager Jim Tracy infuriated - for his seventh save in eight chances.
"Stuff like that," Brothers said, "it hasn't been easy yet."
Colorado's Jeremy Guthrie - a former Stanford standout - allowed four hits and one unearned run in 5 1-3 innings in his first start since April 22. He had gone on the disabled list after falling off his bicycle on the way to the ballpark last month.
Lincecum lasted seven innings, striking out seven and walking three for the Giants. At the very least, Lincecum's lethargic starts this season finally disappeared.
Not much else about the final result did.
A night after taking a foul ball from teammate Dexter Fowler off his left leg, Tulowitzki played through soreness and singled in the fourth to score Gonzalez from second for the tying run. Gonzalez's one-out double that landed inches inside the left-field chalk was the first hit off Lincecum, who gave up little on a cold, foggy night under the lights in San Francisco's windy waterfront ballpark.
"Frustrations will happen," Lincecum said. "I have to do my best to take care of the things I can control."
What Lincecum couldn't control cost him - and San Francisco - a win.
Giants third baseman Joaquin Arias left in the fourth after a pitch hit his left forearm. X-rays showed no break, and the team diagnosed Arias with a bruise. Charlie Culberson replaced him at second, moving Emmanuel Burriss to third.
Burriss blew an infield pop by Tyler Colvin for what should've been the final out of Colorado's fifth. He was charged with an error, but San Francisco caught a break when Pacheco - who had reached on a double - only advanced to third on the play. Jonathan Herrera flied out to center to end the inning.
The Rockies refused to let another gift go unwrapped.
Tulowitzki's line-drive single to center in the sixth rolled under the glove of a charging Angel Pagan, allowing the slow-footed Tulowitzki - who might've scored if healthy - to easily jog to third on the error when the ball rolled all the way to the 399-foot sign. Cuddyer followed with an RBI double and Pacheco's sacrifice fly put the Rockies ahead 3-1.
"I want these guys to go all out," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "That's always a tough play - a ball coming right at you. He was trying to make a great catch and it got by him. I would have felt worse if he backed off and caught it on one hop."
Even still, San Francisco had its shots.
Cabrera's two-run double off Josh Outman highlighted a three-run seventh for the Giants. Pagan's two-out single against Matt Belisle evened the score at 4-all before Culberson struck out with Pagan at third.
"It's good to win," Tracy said, "but let's be mindful of what is still not right."
NOTES: The Rockies optioned RHP Carlos Torres to Triple-A Colorado Springs to make room for Guthrie to come off the disabled list. ... San Francisco opens a two-game series Wednesday against St. Louis, while Colorado returns home for a pair with Arizona.
Updated May 16, 2012