Another night, another disappointing performance for Tim Lincecum.
The two-time Cy Young Award failed to get back on track last night against the Marlins, giving up six runs over 5 2/3 innings as part of a 7-6 loss.
Lincecum allowed just one run over the first five innings — a long solo blast by Giancarlo Stanton which actually hit the home run thing in left-center field — before coming unglued in his final inning of work. He gave up three hits, a walk and a sacrifice fly to tie the game and then a go-ahead three-run homer to Chris Coghlan before Giants manager Bruce Bochy brought the hook.
Lincecum has allowed four runs or more in four straight starts and now owns an unlikely 6.41 ERA over his first 10 starts this year. The only qualified starting pitchers with a higher ERA are Luke Hochevar, Mike Minor and Clay Buchholz.
Giants trainer Dave Groeschner assured Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com after last night’s start that Lincecum is healthy, but his prolonged funk remains one of the biggest surprises of the 2012 campaign.
Your Friday box scores:
Cubs 0, Pirates 1
Royals 2, Orioles 8
Padres 1, Mets 6
Rays 7, Red Sox 4
Rockies 6, Reds 3
Blue Jays 3, Rangers 14
Tigers 10, Twins 6
Nationals 7, Braves 4
Indians 3, White Sox 9
Phillies 5, Cardinals 3 (10 innings)
Yankees 6, Athletics 3
Brewers 7, Diamondbacks 1
Angels 6, Mariners 4
Astros 3, Dodgers 1
Thursday is September 1, which means rosters expand. As a result, the Nationals plan to promote pitcher Mat Latos to the major league roster, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. Latos had an opt-out clause for Monday, but after discussing the matter with the team, he agreed to stay at Triple-A Syracuse until Thursday.
Latos, 28, put up a 4.62 ERA over 11 starts with the White Sox before being released in mid-June. Nearly two weeks later, he signed a minor league contract with the Nationals.
In the Nationals’ minor league system, Latos has made three starts for the club’s Gulf Coast League team as well as three for Syracuse. In aggregate, the right-hander has yielded six runs (four earned) on 20 hits and 10 walks with 28 strikeouts in 28 innings.
Latos will likely pitch out of a long relief role for the Nationals and can be used as starting rotation insurance as well.
Mark Buehrle hasn’t officially retired, but he hasn’t thrown a pitch in professional baseball since last October. Still, the Blue Jays wouldn’t mind having some insurance, so manager John Gibbons recently texted Buehrle, “You know, rosters expand in September,” Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports.
Buehrle’s response? He texted back a picture of a lake. Sounds like he’s not interested in making a return, at least this year.
Last year, at the age of 36, Buehrle went 15-8 with a 3.81 ERA with a 91/33 K/BB ratio in 198 2/3 innings while leading the league with four complete games. He fell 1 1/3 innings shy of a 15th consecutive 200-inning season. There are many worse ways to end a career.