Don Bauder 4:30 p.m., Dec. 9
Giants and Lincecum offer Padres nothing
The San Diego Padres couldn't manage a hit against Tim Lincecum as the San Francisco Giants roll on
With Giants fans vastly outnumbering Padres fans at Petco Park on Saturday evening, perhaps it was only fitting that San Francisco would get their own version of a give-away other than a smart phone cover. Tim Lincecum obliged by tossing the first no-hitter in the short history of Petco as the Giants crushed the Padres 9-0.
For Lincecum, it was his first no-no as he struck out 13 along the way, allowing nothing more than four walks and a hit batsman while throwing 148 pitches. Padres starter Edinson Volquez was as bad as Lincecum was good, giving up eight runs on nine hits and a walk in five innings.
"The team is pissed. The team is pissed off. We're not getting it done on the mound, not getting it done at the plate," Padres manager Buddy Black said after the game. Well, of course they are pissed off, getting skunked at home can’t be a happy feeling.
If social media is any indication – and it often is – Padres fans are also pissed off. Their team is the only team remaining in Major League Baseball to ever pitch a no-hitter, yet this is the eighth against them.
There is no point in recounting statistics and no point in attempting to specifically summarize the game. Tim Lincecum, who entered with a dubious record of 4-9, got over on the Padres. And that’s all there is to it.
When the opposition throws a no-hitter against an obviously inferior team, there is no way to spin the loss with anything positive. Other than to say, “Hey, maybe tomorrow they’ll get a hit or two,” it’s the worst thing ever.
It’s demoralizing to the players and a wake-up call to fans who might have been otherwise encouraged. It’s failure at its finest. It’s fuel for critics of the Padres to stoke a bonfire.
It’s also evidence that the Padres aren’t going to be contenders this season, and proof that the offense is low-hanging fruit ripe for plucking by pitchers with a clue as to how to throw anything with movement and varying velocity. As for Volquez, unless he turns it around, as good of a guy that he is, he’ll be looking for a job elsewhere next season.
Saturday night should have been a wake-up call for everyone. We’ll see if anyone – fans, players, and coaches – bothered to answer the phone.
Sunday, the Giants will go for the four-game sweep of the Padres as the series concludes. The Padres will send Eric Stults (7-7, 3.50) to the mound to face Barry Zito (4-6, 4.62) of the Giants. Game time is 1:10 PM PDST, heard on radio 1090 AM and watched on Fox Sports San Diego.
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